Why were Basque Country, Poland, Bohemia and Milan less affected by the Black Plague?


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I am surprised that I missed this the first time.
Poland, along with the Czech Republic, the northern Pyrenees and Milan, is often believed to have been minimally affected by the disease compared to other regions of Europe.

The region now Czech Republic was of course called Bohemia during that time.

The “Celtic Curse” has been attributed with a higher survival rate against the plague, but is this the only factor in play?

Of course, the northern Pyrenees are the now French side of Basque Country.
The root of the word Bohemia as Bavaria stems from the Boii, a Celtic tribe.
And we all know about the Basques:

In the case of Milan, as I remember it, the standard explanation has always been the actions taken by the local Dukes. In 1650 Milan was hit extremely hard.

There haven't been any new developments in the scholarship, to my knowledge.

"I found this op-ed by John Mulhall*, a member of the Max Planck-Harvard Research Center for the Archaeoscience of the Ancient Mediterranean, who attributed Milan's relatively good performance largely to leadership.
The key to its success lay in the decisive executive action of Milan’s ruling dukes. Skilled physicians were essential, but what separated Milan from other states was a government that put the physicians’ talents to best use.
Mostly they did a lot of what we today would call quarantine, contact tracing, and data collection. The early symptoms of Plague are very distinctive, so trained doctors could diagnose it quite quickly. Of course contact tracing and data collection are eminently scalable problems, requiring no special knowledge or equipment. You only need the manpower to throw at the problem, and leadership willing to order it done.
Also, it wasn't a port city, so they were able to reduce outside reintroductions by simply shutting all the gates and routing all travelers around, or into special camps outside the walls."

"As mentioned elsewhere, all these measures just halved Milan's death toll compared to everyone else, down to about 15% of the city, rather than everyone else's 30%.

Of course by the time the next plague rolled around 300 years later, that generation of dukes were not only long dead, but that system of government was too.
In the 1350's Milan was ruled by a family of energetic and highly competent local Dukes who were in fact in the process of expanding their domains in the area. This was a period of Milanese expansion, which within the century would end up encompassing most of northern Italy, and no small amount of Switzerland. So it was quite fair to say the Visconti of the day knew what they were about.
By 1630 Milan was smack in the middle of a 150 year period of being a Hapsburg possession. The rulers were not local, were not even Italian, did not owe their positions to any actual managerial competence, and had little need to concern themselves overmuch with what was happening with the populace in the hinterlands of northeast Italy."

Some other data:

In the case of Bruges, it looks like the latest research is that it probably was not spared at all.
The previous conception of a ‘light touch’ of plague in the Low Countries was created by the overprivileging of particular urban sources, and a failure to account for the rapid replenishment of cities via inward migration, which obscured demographic decimation.
From Joris Roosen of Utrecht University:
There is still a persistent notion that the Low Countries only experienced a 'light touch' of the first wave of the plague (between 1349 and 1351), and that this enabled them to recover quickly and fully. But the numbers tell a different story, at least for modern-day Belgium and parts of the Netherlands. The plague caused an enormous death rate in this region, which persisted in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries and reached cities as well as rural regions."

"This map in question is a distortion of known reality, based on one influential map from 1962 (discussed further down).
The apparent impression that Milan would be have been 'spared' is based on a contemporary account of a Florentine plague survivor, of dubious reliability, and providing only very limited evidence over any relationship between possible cause and effect, as question-map and the witness-account rest on sparse data and biases:
Piacenza was fewer than 42 miles south of Milan, a city of nearly 100,000 people. And yet secure contemporary evidence of the Black Death in Lombardy is almost non-existent (Albini 1982: 14–17). Why would Milan and many other towns and cities to the north of the Po River, all of which were larger than most rural market centers anywhere in Europe and Britain, be spared a disease supposedly spread by contagion? Oddly, many historians accept the claim by a Florentine plague survivor, Matteo Villani, that Milan escaped catastrophic mortality in 1348–49 because its ruler took cruel and aggressive isolationist measures to board up infected houses when the first cases of the new disease appeared. While a few places in Milanese suburban districts reported epidemic outbreaks in 1350, during the high traffic caused by pilgrims to Rome this Jubilee year, no evidence of these outbreaks is unambiguously plague-related.
Instead, the first devastating plague in Milan and the major cities of Lombardy occurred in 1361–63 (Del Panta 1982: 118). Francesco Petrarca fled Milan in the late spring of 1361, as the city faced its initial experience with the catastrophic new epidemic. His son remained behind. Long disappointed by the young man’s adolescent choices and limited achievements, Petrarca consigned his nuanced remorse to pages of a precious manuscript copy of Virgil which his own father had given him:
Our Giovanni,[…] died in the year of our Lord 1361, […] He died in Milan in the unexampled general devastation wrought by the plague, which hitherto had left that city immune from such evils, but now has found it and has invaded it.
Many of Petrarca’s other correspondents survived the initial wave of plague, only to die in the next epidemic. Francesco Nelli subsequently died of plague, in Avignon, in 1363.
[SUB]— Ann G. Carmichael: "Plague Persistence in Western Europe: A Hypothesis", 'Pandemic Disease in the Medieval World: Rethinking the Black Death', The Medieval Globe, Vol. 1, No. 1, Article 8, 2014. (link)

There are even those who doubt it was spared to any degree in 1350, although it was "spared" a few days prior. There's even controversy as to whether those measures actually worked,and if it wasn't perhaps acquired immunity from the first pass through.[/SUB]

"[/SUB] And we see other areas that – unlike Venice, the most often cited counterexample to Milan – too some well thought out measures accounting for everything of contemporary latest fashions in medicine, based on mainly miasmatic theory, similar to Milan, but which suffered a great deal more than Milan. In contrast to Milan we have the best known example of Pistoria, which in seeing the plague coming enacted a much wider ranging regimen of even preventive public health measures, enacted in Spring of 1348: Pistoia, "Ordinances for Sanitation in a Time of Mortality".
These measurements were grounded in received wisdom and experience, easily comparable to Milan, or slightly later Venice or Florence, and yet they were quite ineffective in reducing the death toll during that crisis, which amounted to 25% of the population. "


Other significant differences exist with this map (an unreferenced scan of a professional publication), where e.g. the area of Poland/Silesia marked "unaffected" in this map is part of a much larger area marked as "Area for which there is insufficient information"."

https://history.stackexchange.com/q...a,the first cases of the new disease appeared.
The picture was even more varied:


The Black Death (1347–1352 CE) is the most renowned pandemic in human history, believed by many to have killed half of Europe’s population. However, despite advances in ancient DNA research that conclusively identified the pandemic’s causative agent (bacterium Yersinia pestis), our knowledge of the Black Death remains limited, based primarily on qualitative remarks in medieval written sources available for some areas of Western Europe. Here, we remedy this situation by applying a pioneering new approach, ‘big data palaeoecology’, which, starting from palynological data, evaluates the scale of the Black Death’s mortality on a regional scale across Europe. We collected pollen data on landscape change from 261 radiocarbon-dated coring sites (lakes and wetlands) located across 19 modern-day European countries. We used two independent methods of analysis to evaluate whether the changes we see in the landscape at the time of the Black Death agree with the hypothesis that a large portion of the population, upwards of half, died within a few years in the 21 historical regions we studied. While we can confirm that the Black Death had a devastating impact in some regions, we found that it had negligible or no impact in others. These inter-regional differences in the Black Death’s mortality across Europe demonstrate the significance of cultural, ecological, economic, societal and climatic factors that mediated the dissemination and impact of the disease. The complex interplay of these factors, along with the historical ecology of plague, should be a focus of future research on historical pandemics.
Here is a documentary that was brought to my attention:
Geneticist Steven O'Brien investigates whether a genetic mutation that helped the inhabitants of a village called Eyam in Derbyshire survive the Black Death pandemic in the 14th century help scientists find a cure for AIDS.
From Wikipedia:
Survival among those affected appeared random, as many who remained alive had close contact with those who died but never caught the disease. For example, Elizabeth Hancock was uninfected despite burying six children and her husband in eight days. The graves are known as the Riley graves after the farm where they lived.[14] The unofficial village gravedigger, Marshall Howe, also survived, despite handling many infected bodies.[16]

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That's the rise of the middleman.
Only Basques, a city in North Italy and Eastern Germany/Poland survived.
Basically everybody from the 2 Europes had to suffer. But the ones in the intraeuropean border survived. That's good, very good indeed.
I suggest you go back and re-read my post. There is no data from Poland, and Milan did get hit, twice in fact, just not in that specific year.

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