Marchione di Coppo Stefani (Florentine Chronicler)

Marchione di Coppo Stefani Demographics:
  • Name - Marchione di Coppo Stefani
  • Birth - 1336 (Florence)
  • Died - not known
  • Residence - Florence, Italy
  • Nationality - Italian
  • Occupation - Chronicler
Marchione di Coppo Stefani Other Facts:
  • Wrote a first hand account about the 1348 Black Death in Florence (in the Florentine Chronicle).
  • The Florentine Chronicle was written in the late 1370's & early 1380's.
  • The account gave valuable information about:
    • What people did during the plague.
    • How they protected themselves.
    • How they survived.
    • How many people died in Florence (96,000).
  • Without the writings of Stefani, and others, we wouldn’t know as much of the detail about the struggles during the plague.
Marchione di Coppo Stefani Quotes:
"In the year of the Lord 1348 there was a very great pestilence in the city and district of Florence. …. Almost none of the ill survived past the fourth day. Neither physicians nor medicines were effective… there seemed to be no cure. …. And it was not just that men and women died, but even ….dogs, cats, chickens, oxen, donkeys sheep showed the same symptoms and died of the same disease."

"Child abandoned the father, husband the wife, wife the husband, one brother the other, one sister the other.…And those who died had neither confessor nor other sacraments. And many died with no one looking after them. And many died of hunger because when someone took to bed sick, another in the house, terrified, said to him: "I'm going for the doctor." Calmly walking out the door, the other left and did not return again."

"Now it was ordered by the bishop and the Lords [of the city government] that they should formally inquire as to how many died in Florence. When it was seen at the beginning of October that no more persons were dying of the pestilence, they found that among males, females, children and adults, 96,000 died between March and October."

"At every church, or at most of them, they dug deep trenches, down to the waterline, wide and deep, depending on how large the parish was. And those who were responsible for the dead carried them on their backs in the night in which they died and threw them into the ditch, or else they paid a high price to those who would do it for them. The next morning, if there were many [bodies] in the trench, they covered them over with dirt. And then more bodies were put on top of them, with a little more dirt over those; they put layer on layer just like one puts layers of cheese in a lasagna."

Posted by ALCHEssMIST.
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