Factors and Consequences of the Spread of the Black Death (Great Plague of the Middle Ages) in Iran (Eighth and Ninth Century AH / Fourteenth and Fifteenth Century AD)

Document Type: Original Article


Assistant Professor of History, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran.


In the world history, from ancient times up to now, the plague has been followed by heavy casualties on human societies and social order. One of the deadliest plagues is the Great Plague of the middle ages, or so-called Black Death. This plague, in the eighth and ninth AH (fourteenth and fifteenth century AD) swept over some large areas of Asia, especially the Middle East, as well as Europe, and massacred millions of people. In Iran, the plague had three stages, especially in Azerbaijan and Heart where it imposed heavy losses. At that time, after the collapse of Ilkhanid, local dynasties, namely Timurid and Turkmen, ruled in Iran. Factors which played a pivotal role in the break- out of the disease are as follows: environmental Factors, human actions, especially the invasion of Mongols and the East-West trade. The present study, employing descriptive – analytical method and having access to related historical sources, has investigated the outbreak of the plague and its social consequences in Iran. The purpose of this paper is to show the impact of the outbreak of plague on social movements and its role in the recession of Iranian-islamic civilization in the Middle Ages of Iran.