Plagues of the 1700s
1702 – A plague made its appearance near Pinezow or Pickzow, in Poland, soon after the unfortunate battle between the Saxons and Swedes. The next year it appeared in some places near Cracow and Russia, having already caused a great mortality near the Hungarian Mountains, called Crapach ; from thence it took its progress eastward, towards the upper Volhynia, and westward to Lemburgh; in 1704, it raged very violently in these two Palatinates ; at Lemburgh, a vast number of its inhabitants died, and many fled to save their lives. In autumn, it spread in those places lying to the west and south of it, beginning at a village called Radymno, on this side Jariflow and afterwards invading other places seated between the rivers San and Volodarora, it spread till it came towards the Samber. In 1705 it left Lemburgh, and went north and west of Great Poland, though Jariflow, Sieniawe, Zamose, and other adjacent places, and continued in that part of the country, as far as Posen, all that year. In 170″, it entered the city of Warsaw, where, in that summer, it destroyed a great number of people. In 1703, it approached Polish Prussia, and the latter end of August it broke out in Thorn, where it continued till the beginning of next year, and swept away a considerable number of people; this progress made the inhabitants of Dantzic very apprehensive of danger: public prayers were ordered in the churches, and the magistrates left nothing undone that tended to the common safety; commerce and communication with the infected, and even suspected places were forbid; no sort of merchandise or goods were allowed to be brought from such places, especially wool, raw leather, furs, beds, &c.; all strangers and travellers were strictly examined, and none permitted to enter without sufficient proofs that they came from healthy and unsuspected places; all the inhabitants were cautioned not to correspond with, or harbour persons from infected places : these and other necessary precautions were taken, and by public act enjoined, from July 11, 1708, to February, 1709, notwithstanding, the distemper gradually proceeded into the city.
1709 – In March there died in one district of the old town of Raumbaum, seven persons; another case was that of a young girl, who by order of the magistrates was sent to the hospital, having some symptoms of a pestilential nature about her, which soon shewed itself by seizing other children in the same room. When Dr. Gottwald went to the hospital as physician in ordinary, to view the patients, he found ten in the same room of different ages, with gangrenous ulcers; in another room there were above twenty children, from six to thirteen years of age all which, except four or five, had pestilential eruptions in the groin, armpits, and neck, or carbuncles on the arms, thighs, legs, and other parts: these he either took to be the plague, or certain forerunners of that destructive distemper. The surgeon did not think it of so dangerous a nature, yet himself and family soon after died of it. From this time the disease and the number of patients daily encreased, but mostly in the towu.
In August and September the plague raged with the greatest violence, and several eminent men lost their lives: two of the chief magistrates and two of the judges died, and about one half of the clergy; but of the physicians, apothecaries, and the surgeons in ordinary, with two exceptions, escaped ; the principal citizens suffered very little, there died 24,533.
It was observed by Dr. Shelwig, that the plague disappeared in the same proportion as it had increased, for in June there died 319, in July 1313, in August 6139, in September 8303, in October 4932, in November 1961, in December 584.
1710 – This year it continued raging in Europe, and particularly at Olsnizt.
1711 – It reached Denmark and Holsatia, destroying great numbers at Copenhagen, This distemper began to shew itself about the beginning of July 1711, and spread till the beginning of September, after which it decreased by little and little to the end of the year : it appears that before this disease there were about 60,000 inhabitants at Copenhagen, whence it is inferred that there are about ‘2000 born every year, and that there die nearly the same number. In the six months that this distemper continued, they stated that it carried off about 25,000 people; but the public accounts mention no more than 22,535: it is believed that the last week of August, and the two first weeks of September, each carried off 2300, besides a great many that died, of which no notice was taken. Almost the same thing happened two years before at Dantzic, where before the plague broke out, there died weekly from forty-five to fifty; but the number of the dead increased by degrees, to the beginning of September; so that in the first week of that month there died 2205, in a second 2070, and in the third 20/5, after which the mortality decreased to the end of the year.
It was observed that very few houses escaped the infection, and in others it did not leave one person alive: that it was generally most fatal to the lower order, which might be owing to their scanty manner of living.
1712 – There was an epidemical fever, attended with a catarrh, which visited most parts of Europe. In England it was called the Dunkirk fever by some, and by others, the new delight.
1713 – There was a pestilential distemper in Austria, Bohemia, and Germany, and more particularly in Vienna, Rutisbon, and Hamburgh.
1720 – The city of Marseilles was visited with this destructive disease, brought in a ship from the Levant, and in seven months, during which it continued, it carried off not fewer than 60,000 people. The ravages of this disease have been dreadful where- ever it has made its appearance. On the first arrival of Europeans at the island of Grand Canary, it contained 14,000 fighting men, soon after which two-thirds of these inhabitants fell a sacrifice to the plague. The destruction it has made in Turkey in Europe, and particularly in Constantinople, must be generally known, and its fatal effects have been particularly heightened there by that firm belief which prevails among the people of predestination, &c. It is generally brought into European Turkey, from Egypt; where it is very frequent, especially at Grand Cairo.
1743 – A plague broke out at Messina.
1759 – A similar disease prevailed at Grand Cairo, when it was suffered to advance without any controul, and the ravages which it committed were of considerable magnitude.
1760 – A plague occurred in Syria, which was one of the most malignant and fatal that was ever experienced there; for it scarcely made its appearance in any part of the body, but it carried off the patient.
1771 – At Moscow, the plague appeared in this year, which had evidently been conveyed from Hin- doostau, and was particularly fatal.
1773 – The plague carried off, in this year 80,000 persons, both at Bassora and Bagdad.
1782 – A dreadful fire broke out at Constantinople, wherein 40,000 houses were burned; and the plague raged both in the capital and provinces. In the same year an epidemical disease prevailed at Brest, by which nearly half of the persons in the King’s employ, were for some time in their beds sick.
1784 – A plague occurred at Smyrna, which carried off 20,000 inhabitants, and in the same year at Tunis, 32,000.
1786 – By an awful visitation of the plague, in the Levant, nearly 800,000 persons perished.
1788 – The plague raged again this year in the Levant.
1791 – This year a plague raged fatally at Smyrna.
1792 – Egypt was visited by a plague, which extended its ravages so that 800,000 persons died.
1799 – On the 9th of August, the plague visited Bar- bary, by which Fez and its vicinity, lost 274,000 persons.