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Black Death and Rebellion
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Black Death and Rebellion
England has never seen a worse catastrophe than the Black Death of 1348. It decimated the ruling class, harrowed the towns and cities and removed 50% of the rural working poor. Whole villages vanished and London’s population diminished by at least a third - it was as if God had betrayed the world and if He couldn’t be trusted, who could be?

The scene inside The Clink, with huge pus-filled swellings under the arms of the dying and countless wasted bodies dragged out for a hasty burial, while others looked on fearful, that they might be next, must have resembled Hell itself.


Black Death and Rebellion



Peasants Revolt
The depleted peasants (the poor people that worked for the rich) asked for more money. King Edward III simply refused their demands, then Richard II, his successor, tried to impose a poll tax upon the peasants. In response, in 1381, the peasants revolted. Led by Wat Tyler, they marched from Kent, set fire to Winchester Palace, killed tax-collectors, wrecked the stews - and emptied The Clink. Though the young king met them at Smithfield and made promises, these were lies. Tyler was killed and in the riots and reprisals that followed, so were many others.

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