Tag Archives: Black Death

Meth Burns

Meth, the modern Black Death, knows a number of ways to destroy.  Explosions are just one of them.

 A crude new method of making methamphetamine poses a risk even to Americans who never get anywhere near the drug: It is filling hospitals with thousands of uninsured burn patients requiring millions of dollars in advanced treatment – a burden so costly that it’s contributing to the closure of some burn units.

Meth is damaging more than its users.  Meth is destroying entire communities – and more.

The Plague, and Brother, We Need a Letter From You!

On the 13th of October 1519 Zwingli’s brother Andreas, who lived, along with the rest of the family, back home in Wildhaus, sent Huldrych a letter asking after his well being and informing him, in no uncertain terms, that the family would like to hear from him.  Promised letters were not arriving and since the plague was raging in Wildhaus, they were justifiably concerned for H.’s health in Zurich.

The letter is signed

Vale ac boni consule.
Salutabis mihi adiutores ac totam tuam familiam etc.
Datum die Iovis ante festum sancti Galli 1519.
Tuus Andreas Zinglius.
Magistro Huodalrico Zinglio, germano meo.

–  Meister Uorich Zwingli, pfarer zuo Zürich zuom großen müster [!] etc.

The reason that Huldrych had neglected his letter writing to the family was that at that very time he was suffering from the effects of the plague himself.

The Black Death struck Zurich in early 1519 and had raged all year.  By October, Zwingli was suffering from it himself and nearly died.  It need not be pointed out that he recovered and flourished but estimates are that at least 1/3 of the city lost their lives.

Zwingli had been urged to leave but had remained with his flock.   Upon his recovery, at the end of 1519, he composed his rightly famous Pestlied comprised of three sections: The Beginning of the Illness; the Midst of It; and Wellness.   The last section contains the following praise:

Gsund, herr gott, gsund!
Ich mein, ich ker
schon widrumb her.
Ja, wenn dich dunckt,
der sünden funck
werd nit mer bherrschen mich uff erd,
so muoß min mund
din lob unnd leer
ußsprechen mer
dann vormals ye,
wie es ioch gen,
einfaltigklich on alle gferd.
Wiewol ich muoß
deß todes buoß
erleyden zwar ein mal
vilicht mit grösserm qual,
dann yetzund wer
geschähen, her,
so ich sunst bin
nach gfaren hin;
so wil ich doch
den trutz und boch
in diser wält
tragen frölich umb widergelt
mit hilffe din,
on den nüt mag vollkummen sin.

Made in China: The Black Death!

This is fascinating!  It seems China’s exporting harmful stuff isn’t new…

The great waves of plague that twice devastated Europe and changed the course of history had their origins in China, a team of medical geneticists reported Sunday, as did a third plague outbreak that struck less harmfully in the 19th century. And in separate research, a team of biologists reported conclusively this month that the causative agent of the most deadly plague, the Black Death, was the bacterium known as Yersinia pestis. This agent had always been the favored cause, but a vigorous minority of biologists and historians have argued the Black Death differed from modern cases of plague studied in India, and therefore must have had a different cause.

Lead painted toys, bad drywall, and harmful bacteria… thanks China!  Maybe we should consider refusing Chinese imports…  I know for sure we should refuse Chinese plagues.  But that’s just common sense.

Via Irene Hahn on FB.