The Third Horseman

The Third Horseman

Climate Change and the Great Famine of the 14th Century

Book - 2014
Average Rating:
Rate this:
In May 1315, it started to rain. It didn't stop anywhere in north Europe until August. Next came the four coldest winters in a millennium. Two separate animal epidemics killed nearly 80 percent of northern Europe's livestock. Wars between Scotland and England, France and Flanders, and two rival claimants to the Holy Roman Empire destroyed all remaining farmland. After seven years, the combination of lost harvests, warfare, and pestilence would claim six million lives--one eighth of Europe's total population. William Rosen draws on a wide array of disciplines, from military history to feudal law to agricultural economics and climatology, to trace the succession of traumas that caused the Great Famine. With dramatic appearances by Scotland's William Wallace, and the luckless Edward II and his treacherous Queen Isabella, history's best documented episode of catastrophic climate change comes alive, with powerful implications for future calamities.
Publisher: New York, New York :, Viking,, 2014
ISBN: 9780670025893
Branch Call Number: ANF 940.192 ROS
Characteristics: 302 pages : maps ; 24 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

ChristchurchLib Jun 30, 2014

Documents the early 14th-century period of rain, cold, disease and warfare that created the worst famine in European history, tracing the epidemics and lost harvests that cost nearly 80 percent of the region's livestock and some six million human lives. July 2014 History and Current Events Newsletter.

Jun 12, 2014

Despite the title, this is as much a political history as anything else, with particular focus on English/Scottish conflicts. It does a good job of connecting weather disasters with political events.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at VIRL

To Top