- Aug 2013
- Lorraine tudesque
Sure, but plague is only really dangereous for people living close to each eather : a village.If these guys are right, the entry into Europe occurs with the Copper Age and we should be blaming the Indo-Europeans horse riders and not the Middle East Neothilic farmer for this particular disease.
The authors of the report which I summarise below show that the YPestis grand parent was a tuberculosis bacterium which mutated and continues to mutate:
From our findings, we conclude that the ancestor of extant Y. pestis strains was present by the end of the 4th millennium BC and was widely spread across Eurasia from at least the early 3rd millennium BC. The occurrence of plague in the Bronze Age Eurasian individuals we sampled (7 of 101) indicates that plague infections were common at least 3,000 years earlier than recorded historically. However, based on the absence of crucial virulence genes, unlike the later Y. pestis strains that were responsible for the first to third pandemics, these ancient ancestral Y. pestis strains likely did not have the ability to cause bubonic plague, only pneumonic and septicemic plague.
These early plagues may have been responsible for the suggested population declines in the late 4th millennium BC and the early 3rd millennium BC (Hinz et al., 2012, Shennan et al., 2013).
It has recently been demonstrated by ancient genomics that the Bronze Age in Europe and Asia was characterized by large-scale population movements, admixture, and replacements (Allentoft et al., 2015, Haak et al., 2015), which accompanied profound and archaeologically well-described social and economic changes (Anthony, 2007, Kristiansen and Larsson, 2005).
In light of our findings, it is plausible that plague outbreaks could have facilitated—or have been facilitated by—these highly dynamic demographic events. However, our data suggest that Y. pestis did not fully adapt as a flea-borne mammalian pathogen until the beginning of the 1st millennium BC, which precipitated the historically recorded plagues.
No real village before the Neolithic Revolution.