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Archiver > GEN-MEDIEVAL > 2000-02 > 0950617797


From: Brant Gibbard <>
Subject: Re: Royal Death From Plague
Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2000 07:29:57 -0500


On 15 Feb 2000 07:29:39 GMT, (DavidBotts) wrote:

>So my source saying Louis IX was buried in Saint-Denis, France must be
>incorrect, or were his ashes indeed collected and buried?

The body was boiled to remove the flesh from the bones. The heart and
entrails were buried in Palermo.

>
>Thanks,
>Dave Botts
>
>BTW, the plague never completely goes away. Just hides out until the rodent
>population has a growth spurt, or drought, etc. drives the critters en masse to
>populated areas. Out in California, the early rats who came by ship carried
>fleas to the native rodent population, where it has existed for years in remote
>areas.

Yes, but the only natural rodent reservoirs of the disease at the time
were in the marmot populations of Central Asia. There were (and are) no
reservoirs of suitable burrowing rodents in Europe. The reservoir in the
south-western US did not exist until, IIRC, a late 19th century outbreak
of the plague that started in Asia.

Another reason why I find it hard to believe that Louis died of the
bubonic plague (as opposed to the generalized use of the word "plague",
as in "the plagues of Egypt") is that the army returned to Italy a few
months after Louis' death, and yet the bubonic plague did not break out
in Europe with the return of the presumably infected army.


Brant Gibbard

http://home.inforamp.net/~bgibbard/gen
Toronto, Ont.

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