Meaning of Plague

What is Plague:

Plague is an infectious and highly contagious disease caused by a bacteria called Yersinia pestis. This type of bacteria comes from rodents (rats, mice, squirrels) and is transmitted by insects that come into contact with them, such as flies and fleas.

The bacteria are spread by infected insect bites in both animals and humans. Once a human being is infected by sting, he can infect others by unconsciously expelling contaminated saliva.

Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for this scourge. However, today the plague can be cured through strong antibiotic treatment.

Due to not having a vaccine to date, and due to its highly contagious and harmful nature, the plague is a disease that has caused different epidemics and pandemics throughout history, which has left a mark on culture.

Hence the word "plague" is applied by extension to the various illnesses without cure that have plagued mankind. For example: "AIDS is the plague of modern times."

The word also refers to bad smells, in the sense of "pestilence". Example: "What a stench there is in this place!"

Likewise, the word is used figuratively to imply that something or someone is a factor of damage, corruption or annoyance, and that it infects each other. For example: "Corrupt politicians are a pest."

Likewise, when one person speaks ill of another, or when he is very upset and expresses himself violently, it is said that he "freaks out." For example: "He left there fuming from his mouth." "Mauricio was speaking pests about Carmela."

Types of plague

From a clinical point of view, various types of plague are known. Namely:

  • Bubonic plague: Bubonic plague is characterized by aches, fever, chills, and tender lymph nodes. This sensitivity comes from inflammation of the tonsils, adenoids, spleen, and thymus.
  • Septicemic plague: In addition to causing the same symptoms of fever, pain, and chills, septicemic plague spreads through the blood, causing bleeding in different organs, including the skin.
  • Pneumonic plague: Pneumonic plague is the most serious of all the manifestations of plague, as it attacks the respiratory system, especially the lungs, causing pneumonia.

The plague in history

Throughout human history, the plague has been responsible for several health crises, that is, several epidemics.

The first record that is had accuses that the plague had already wreaked havoc between the 6th and 8th centuries, when it received the name of “Justinian's plague”. From Pelusium, the point of origin, it spread to Alexandria and Constantinople.

In the Middle Ages, the Black Death decimated at least a third of the population of Europe and for this reason, it is considered a reference point to determine the end of this historical period and the beginning of the Renaissance.

A third moment of sanitary terror with the plague occurred in China at the end of the 19th century, and was even felt in several islands in the Caribbean. In China, the plague of the 19th century claimed the lives of some 10 million people.

See also:

  • Epidemic.
  • Pandemic.

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