Today’s society is filled to the brim with terror and uncertainty of what tomorrow may bring knocking on their front door. Sickness or even death, perhaps? England is hidden in the cloak of sickness known as the Black Death and no matter how hard people try to escape from its folds, no one is safe from this plague. In a panic, healthy people have done all they can to avoid this sickness. The doctors refuse to see patients; the priests refuse to administer last rites. Shopkeepers have closed their stores, and many people have fled the cities for the countryside, but even there people are finding that the plague has spread (“Black Death”). The farmers and retailers of farm produce are also in danger of catching the Bubonic plague due to the fact that there are fleas on their animals (“Spread of the Elizabethan Bubonic Plague in Elizabethan England”). The plague causes many problems for the victim, such as very high fever, delirium, vomiting, muscular pains, and the swelling of lymph nodes. Many believe that the plague is a punishment from God. They believe the only way to overcome the plague is to win back God’s forgiveness. Some people are having a hard time coping with the terror they have for the plague and are lashing out at their neighbors (“Black Death”). The reason for this is because many of these people don’t know how to deal with this new terror and suspense of not knowing what is going to happen to them, so they turn their fear into anger and use that anger to lash out at others. This is almost a way of blaming others for the problems that have taken over everyday life because of the plague. While this may seem outlandish to do, it’s not as crazy as the way some of the upper-class men are coping with this time of terror. Many of them have joined processions of flagellants and travel from town to town to engage in public displays of penance and punishment. A flagellant is someone who whips themselves as a part of a religious penance. They do...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document