Ah, the sun! The great giver and destroyer of life; oppressive and deadly, illuminating and vital. I like to keep out of its reach. My summer days are whittled away in the shade or in the comforting gloom of a darkened room with my face in a book, anticipating the return of the cold somewhere […]

Knowing the history of infectious disease epidemics and pandemics like plague, smallpox, cholera, etc. is important when it comes to understanding whatever new disease comes our way. In this video, I discuss how the plague thwarted Justinian’s efforts to make the Mediterranean a Roman lake again in the middle of the sixth century.