Black Death grave © On average, between 30-45% of the general populace died in the Black Death of 1348-50. But in some villages, 80% or 90% of the population died (and in Kilkenny at least, it seems likely that the death-rate was 100%!). A death-rate of 30% is higher than the total British losses in World War I.
Nor was 1350 the end of it. Plague recurred! It came back in 1361-64, 1368, 1371, 1373-75, 1390, 1405 and continued into the fifteenth century. Death rates in the later epidemics may have been lower than the Black Death, but the sources reveal a new horror:
The message is clear: the plague was hitting the population of England where it hurt most, in its young. Modern research shows that it was entirely possible for the plague to have become both age and gender specific by the 1360s, with profound consequences for the reproductive cycle of the population. By the 1370s, the population of England had been halved and it was not recovering.
1/54 9 March 2018
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, with Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard, during a visit to Abertay University in Dundee, prior to his address to delegates at the Scottish Labour Party Conference in the city's Caird Hall
2/54 8 March 2018
Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson sits with Year 1 pupils during a visit to St Leonard's Church of England Primary Academy in Hastings
3/54 7 March 2018
Electronic billboards show adverts for Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman with the hashtag ‘#ANewSaudiArabia’ in London
4/54 6 March 2018
A police officer stands guard outside a branch of the Italian chain restaurant Zizzi close to The Maltings shopping centre in Salisbury, which was closed in connection to the ongoing major incident sparked after a man and a woman were found critically ill on a bench at the shopping centre on 4 March
5/54 5 March 2018
Gary Oldman, winner of the Best Actor award for 'Darkest Hour,' poses with his award in the press room during the 90th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center.
6/54 4 March 2018
Great Britain's Andrew Pozzi celebrates winning the men's 60m hurdles final as Aries Merritt of United States looks dejected during the IAAF World Indoor Championships at Arena Birmingham.
7/54 3 March 2018
People playing with their sledges in Greenwich Park, east London, as the cold weather continues around the country.
8/54 2 March 2018
Theresa May delivers a speech about her vision for Brexit at Mansion House.
9/54 1 March 2018
'The Couple', a sculpture by Sean Henry, braves the snow in Newbiggin-By-The-Sea in Northumberland, as storm Emma, rolling in from the Atlantic, looks poised to meet the Beast from the East's chilly Russian air.
PA Wire/PA Images
10/54 28 February 2018
The scene on the M80 Haggs in Glasgow, as the highest level of weather warning has been issued for Scotland and Ireland as forecasters warn of "blizzard-like" conditions. A red alert for Munster and Leinster in the Republic of Ireland and the central belt of Scotland has been put out for heavy snow and strong winds. Dublin, Kildare, Louth, Wicklow and Meath are also covered by a red warning, which was issued early on Wednesday morning.
11/54 27 February 2018
Icicles hang from a frozen elephant fountain in Colchester. Freezing weather conditions dubbed the "Beast from the East" has seen snow and sub-zero temperatures hit the UK.
12/54 26 February 2018
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn makes a keynote speech as he sets out Labour's position on Brexit, at the National Transport Design Centre in Coventry. Jeremy Corbyn's Brexit speech confirmed that a Labour Government would negotiate full tariff-free access to EU markets for UK business.
13/54 25 February 2018
Victims of the Northern Ireland Troubles come together to take part in the Time for truth march through Belfast city centre against the stalled efforts in dealing with Northern Ireland's legacy issues.
14/54 24 February 2018
Oxford University Boat Club race in preparation for The Cancer Research UK Boat Race 2018, Oxford University Boat Club race Oxford Brookes University in London, England.
15/54 23 February 2018
Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell leaves Barkingside Magistrates Court after being given a £87,170 fine in Barking, England. Mr Chappell, who was in charge of BHS for a year before it went bust, was found guilty of failing to provide information demanded by The Pensions Regulator.
16/54 22 February 2018
Youths chase after the leather ball during the annual 'Fastern Eve Handba' event in Jedburgh's High Street in the Scottish Borders in Jedburgh, Scotland. The annual event, which started in the 1700's, takes place today and involves two teams, the Uppies (residents from the higher part of Jedburgh) and the Doonies (residents from the lower part of Jedburgh) getting the ball to either the top or bottom of the town. The ball which is made of leather, stuffed with straw and decorated with ribbons is thrown into the crowd to begin the game.
17/54 21 February 2018
An anti-Brexit campaign battle bus drives through Westminster in London, England. The crowd-funded coach is to tour the country making 33 stops two years after the Vote Leave campaign drove a similar bus around the UK with the now famous slogan: 'We send the EU £350 million a week let's fund our NHS instead'.
18/54 20 February 2018
Sarah Clarke is introduced as the new Black Rod to the House of Lords. She is the first female Black Rod in the 650-year history of the role and will be known as the Lady Usher of the Black Rod.
19/54 19 February 2018
Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson holds a rhinoceros horn as he visits a Metropolitan Police wildlife crime unit facility in London. The Foreign Secretary's visit was to help him learn more about the work they do internationally to tackle the illegal wildlife trade (IWT).
20/54 18 February 2018
Allison Janney, Daniel Kaluuya and Gary Oldman clutching their BAFTA awards
21/54 17 February 2018
Lizzy Yarnold of Great Britain celebrates after winning the gold medal during the Women's Skeleton on day eight of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games
22/54 16 February 2018
Models walk the runway at the Richard Malone show during London Fashion Week
23/54 15 February 2018
Dame Vivienne Westwood walks the runway to model in the #INEOSVTHEPEOPLE catwalk presentation outside fracking giant INEOS’s headquarters in London
24/54 14 February 2018
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson delivers his speech: Road to Brexit, a United Kingdom, as part of the Government’s road map on Brexit, at the Policy Exchange, London
25/54 13 February 2018
England and Durham cricketer Ben Stokes, 26, leaving Bristol Magistrates' Court, where he was told he will face a crown court trial over an altercation outside a nightclub
26/54 12 February 2018
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn meets with local party supporters and residents in Penicuik, Midlothian, before speaking at a campaign rally at the town's Miners Welfare Hall
27/54 9 February 2018
Volunteers create a heart shaped collection of plastic bottles littering the foreshore of the River Thames at Queenhithe Dock in central London, in an event organised by the #OneLess campaign and Thames21 to draw attention to the impact that single-use plastic water bottles are having on the environment.
28/54 8 February 2018
Florist Hank Roling poses with a Vanda orchid during a press preview of the Thai Orchid Festival at Kew Gardens, London
29/54 7 February 2018
A staff member poses behind a moon jellyfish tank during the annual stock-take at London Zoo.
30/54 6 February 2018
Prime Minister Theresa May joins female Members of both Houses at the Palace of Westminster, to mark the 100th anniversary of the passing of the Representation of the People Act, which gave certain women over the age of 30 a vote and the right to stand for Parliament.
UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/PA
31/54 5 February 2018
Lauri Love outside the Royal Courts of Justice after a judge ruled against extraditing him to America in a case where he was accused of hacking thousands of US government computers.
32/54 4 February 2018
A statue of suffragette Alice Hawkins being unveiled in Market Square, Leicester. Ms Hawkins, a shoe machinist, was jailed five times while leading the Suffragette campaign in the city in the early 20th Century.
33/54 3 February 2018
Demonstrators gather on Gover Street in central London ahead of a march towards Downing Street to protest against underfunding and privatisation of the NHS and demand an end to the winter crisis in the health service.
34/54 2 February 2018
Millicent Fawcett by Annie Swynnerton, newly on display at Tate Britain. Fawcett was a leading figure in the suffragist movement and campaigned relentlessly to get the vote for women in this country. The portrait of her is on display at Tate Britain to mark the centenary of the Representation of the People Act, which gave women over 30 the right to vote.
35/54 1 February 2018
British Prime Minister Theresa May and husband Philip May visit the Forbidden City in Beijing during her three-day visit to China.
36/54 31 January 2018
A super moon rises behind blocks of flats in north London.
37/54 30 January 2018
Members of the Jarl Squad dressed in Viking suits after marching through the streets in Lerwick on the Shetland Isles during the Up Helly Aa Viking Festival.
38/54 29 January 2018
Travis Frain (left) and Dan Hett from the Survivors Against Terror Group talk to students at Manchester Enterprise Academy. Frain survived the Westminster attack in March 2017, while Hett’s brother Martin was one of the 22 who died in the Manchester attack in May 2017.
39/54 28 January 2018
Members of the English Civil War Society take part in the King's Army Annual March and Parade, in London, as they commemorate the execution of Charles I. The route follows the route taken by Charles I from St James Palace on the Mall to the place of his death at the Banqueting House in Whitehall.
40/54 27 January 2018
Will Grigg celebrates scoring Wigan's second goal from the penalty spot during the Emirates FA Cup, fourth round match against West Ham at the DW Stadium. League One Wigan knocked out the Premier League side 2-0.
41/54 26 January 2018
US entrepreneur and co-founder of the Microsoft Corporation, Bill Gates and Britain's International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt meet vet Andy Hopker and students Vanya Lalljee and Jennifer Hunt during an event to launch the Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Security at the University of Edinburgh.
42/54 25 January 2018
President Donald Trump meets with British Prime Minister Theresa May at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
43/54 24 January 2018
Alun Wyn Jones of Wales, Guilhem Guirado of France, Dylan Hartley of England, Rory Best of Ireland, John Barclay of Scotland and Sergio Parisse of Italy pose with the trophy during the 6 Nations Launch event at the Hilton in London.
44/54 23 January 2018
Kyle Edmund reacts after winning his men's quarter-final match against Grigor Dimitrov at the Australian Open. He will play sixth seed Marin Cilic in the semi-final.
45/54 22 January 2018
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson next to US Ambassador to Britain Woody Johnson on a visit to the new embassy in London, a discreet move after criticism of US President Donald Trump who refused to inaugurate it.
46/54 21 January 2018
Women's rights demonstrators hold placards and chant slogans during the Time's Up rally at Richmond Terrace, opposite Downing Street. The Time's Up Women's March marks the one year anniversary of the first Women's March in London and in 2018 it is inspired by the Time's Up movement against sexual abuse. The Time's Up initiative was launched at the start of January 2018 as a response to the #MeToo movement and the Harvey Weinstein scandal.
47/54 20 January 2018
Britain's Penny Coomes and Nicholas Buckland perform in the pairs ice dance free dance event at the European figure skating championships in Moscow.
48/54 19 January 2018
Sheep graze in a field in Thornhill, Scotland. Forecasters have issued a new warning of snow and icy conditions in Southern Scotland with the police advising people to leave work early in affected areas.
49/54 18 January 2018
French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Theresa May look up at a military fly past at Sandhurst Military Academy in Camberley. Theresa May is expected to make an announcement as part of the Anglo-France Summit at The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, where she will discuss Britain's strong and wide-ranging bilateral relationship with President Macron.
50/54 17 January 2018
A jackknifed lorry is recovered on the M74, following motorists spending the night stranded on the motorway in Abington, Scotland. Mountain rescue teams spent the night helping drivers following heavy snowfall in the Dumfries and Galloway region.
51/54 16 January 2018
Carillion, which has a variety of private and public service contracts in Britain and employs 43,000 staff worldwide, announced its immediate liquidation on Monday after the heavily-indebted company failed to secure a last-ditch financial rescue from the government and banks. Carillion held a £335 million contract to build the new Liverpool city hospital, the delivery of which was already delayed by the time the company went into liquidation.
52/54 15 January 2018
Dolores O’Riordan, frontwoman of the iconic Irish grunge-rock band The Cranberries, died suddenly at the age of 46. A spokesperson for O’Riordan said she died “suddenly” in London, where she had travelled for a short recording session.
53/54 14 January 2018
Glen Durrant celebrates with the trophy after victory during day nine of the BDO World Professional Darts Championship 2018 at The Lakeside.
54/54 13 January 2018
The Whittlesea Straw Bear festival in Cambridgeshire celebrates the old Fenland plough custom of parading straw bears around the town every January. This Festival happens on the first weekend after Plough Monday. The procession, led by the Straw Bear, has over 250 dancers, musicians and performers. They perform traditional Molly, Morris, Clog and Sword dancing.