The Great Transition: Climate, Disease and Society in the Late-Medieval World

  title={The Great Transition: Climate, Disease and Society in the Late-Medieval World},
  author={Bruce M. Campbell},
In the fourteenth century the Old World witnessed a series of profound and abrupt changes in the trajectory of long-established historical trends. Trans-continental networks of exchange fractured and an era of economic contraction and demographic decline dawned from which Latin Christendom would not begin to emerge until its voyages of discovery at the end of the fifteenth century. In a major new study of this ‘Great Transition’, Bruce Campbell assesses the contributions of commercial recession… 

The Role of Climate and Famine in the Medieval Eastern Expansion

Competing concepts and multiple models of medieval expansion to the northeastern frontiers of Central Europe and the internal colonization of the continent have been discussed intensely in

Disaster recovery: new archaeological evidence for the long-term impact of the ‘calamitous’ fourteenth century

Abstract The Black Death swept across Europe and Asia in the fourteenth century, killing millions and devastating communities. Recent re-evaluations of source data, the discovery of new plague

Climate change and society in the 15th to 18th centuries

Scholars in many disciplines have used diverse methods and sources to establish that, between the 15th and 18th centuries, a “Little Ice Age” considerably cooled Earth's climate. In four particularly

Climate and the Crises of the Early Fourteenth Century in Northeastern Europe

: This article demonstrates how tree-ring material can be applied to historical research using the climate-driven crises of the fourteenth century as a case study. Medieval northeastern Europe is a

The European Mortality Crises of 1346–52 and Advent of the Little Ice Age

Between 1315 and 1352 populations in first northern, then southern and finally the whole of Europe succumbed to a succession of devastating mortality crises. These derived from a common episode of

The source of the Black Death in fourteenth-century central Eurasia

The origin of the medieval Black Death pandemic (ad 1346–1353) has been a topic of continuous investigation because of the pandemic’s extensive demographic impact and long-lasting consequences1,2.


  • B. Campbell
  • Geography
    Transactions of the Royal Historical Society
  • 2017
ABSTRACT In 1258, as baronial opposition to Henry III erupted and the government became locked in constitutional conflict, the country found itself in the grip of a serious food crisis. To blame was

Death by the Lake: Mortality Crisis in Early Fourteenth-Century Central Asia

  • Philip Slavin
  • Environmental Science
    Journal of Interdisciplinary History
  • 2019
Our information about the fourteenth-century plague in Central Asia, or indeed anywhere east of the Crimea/Caspian, derives from a close analysis of the epigraphical evidence from three East Syriac

Climatic Variation and Society in Medieval South Asia: Unexplored Threads of History and Archaeology of Mandu

Instabilities of the monsoon climate system, along with alternating periods of severe dryness and wetness, are known to have punctuated and disrupted the lives of peoples and institutions across Asia



Global Crisis: War, Climate Change and Catastrophe in the Seventeenth Century

Revolutions, droughts, famines, invasions, wars, regicides - the calamities of the mid-seventeenth century were not only unprecedented, they were agonisingly widespread. A global crisis extended from

Climate Change and the Course of Global History: A Rough Journey

Introduction: growth, punctuation, and human well-being Part I. Evolution and Earth Systems: 1. The court jester on the platform of life 2. Human emergences Part II. Domestication, Agriculture, and

The Waning of the Little Ice Age: Climate Change in Early Modern Europe

The supposed ramifications of the Little Ice Age, a period of cooling temperatures straddling several centuries in northwestern Europe, reach far beyond meteorology into economic, political, and

The Impact of Climate on Southeast Asia, circa 950–1820: New Findings

Abstract The recent discovery of continuous tree-ring series starting as early as 1030 CE has for the first time made possible the reconstruction of historical climates for much of mainland Southeast

The Impact of Drought in Early Fourteenth‐Century England

type="main"> Climatic change is currently viewed as one of the main causes of the so-called crisis of the early fourteenth century. It is well established that England saw increased storminess and

Filling the Eastern European gap in millennium-long temperature reconstructions

This work compiles 545 samples of living trees and historical timbers from the greater Tatra region to reconstruct interannual to centennial-long variations in Eastern European May–June temperature back to 1040 AD, concluding that recent anthropogenic warming exceeds the range of past natural climate variability.

Peasants and Production in the Medieval North-East: The Evidence from Tithes, 1270-1536

The peasant economy in north-east England, and indeed throughout the country as a whole, underwent many changes during the later middle ages, but owing to the lack of evidence it has been difficult

An Environmental History of Medieval Europe

How did medieval Europeans use and change their environments, think about the natural world, and try to handle the natural forces affecting their lives? This groundbreaking environmental history

Dark ages and dark areas: global deforestation in the deep past

Deforestation is a major earth transforming process but knowledge of what occurred in the ‘deep’ past, before c. 1500, is obscure and characterized by ‘dark ages in time and dark areas in space’.