Malaria and the fall of Rome

Storage jars from LugnanoIt took a bit of digging (appropriately enough), but we found this BBC page that reviews work by Prof. David Soren (University of Arizona). Assessing remarkable remains from the large children’s cemetery found at Lugnano, Soren considers the impact a deadly epidemic might have had on the Eternal city as the empire declined.

We should note that the theories presented here are far from universally accepted; for example, see W.V. Harris’ review of the book that resulted from this research project and his argument that the evidence for an epidemic of malaria is entirely indirect and its impact on Rome overstated.

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