Genetic mutations caused the Black Death


Genetic mutations caused the Black Death

The article seems to say contradictory things about the role of biofilms.

As I understand it though, the ancestor of Yersinia Pestis had a set of genes which produced a biofilm that allowed it to survive in the lower intestine of fleas. A mutation then occurred, stripping the bacteria of its ability to make this particular biofilm.

Instead, it produced a different kind of biofilm, which permitted it to survive in the upper GI tract – increasing the chances that the bacteria would be transmitted via flea bites.

H/t: Instapundit

Which reminds me of History TeachersBlack Death (based on “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani):

Song of Seikilos

The oldest (complete) piece of music from the ancient world. Written by a Greek man between 200 B.C. & 100 A.D. upon the death of his wife:

Ὅσον ζῇς φαίνου
μηδὲν ὅλως σὺ λυποῦ
πρὸς ὀλίγον ἐστὶ τὸ ζῆν
τὸ τέλος ὁ χρόνος ἀπαιτεῖ.

— the Seikilos epitaph, from Wikipedia


Set to the music of The Knack’s “My Sharona”. By HistoryTeachers.

Oooh, they’re marchin’, here they come,
In the sun
Armies of King Philip of Macedonia
Oooh, see the Greek army run
They gotta run
Defeated at the Battle of Chaeronea
Ended all the great
Athens, Sparta, Thebes
Alex tried to unite
All to fight Persians in Asia Mi-i-nor

Conquered Egypt, Palestine…and Syria
Led by Alexander of Macedonia
Beat the Persian infantry
Beat them at the Battle of Gaugamela
Conquering the East, and the West
Spreading culture of Greece and their beliefs
Architecture out to India and A-a-a-a-Asia

Hellenistic legacy, legacy
Greek ideas spread throughout Macedonia
Alex died and there were four
Kingdoms four:
Egypt, Syria, Pergamum and Macedonia
Rome would step it up
Take ‘em down
Run ‘em outta town
But they knew the Greeks
Were the peeps
With superior bods and mi-i-i-i-inds

Mi-i-i-i-inds, whoo!