11. Sex Played A Huge Role During The Plague
One would think sex was the last thing on the minds of medieval people during the Black Death, but it wasn’t. Sexual activity was advised to be limited since doctors thought the plague would enter through the pores of the body and heavy breathing would increase the chances. What did they expect someone to do? Tell stories with good music to delight the heart.
People would often fornicate in graveyards to laugh in the face of death and celebrate life. This eventually became illegal, and the papal office threatened people with excommunication if they were caught. People thought that sexual immorality was one of the causes of the plague, so sodomy, prostitution, adultery, etc. was outlawed and heavy fines enacted. Luckily for prostitutes, the plague helped their working conditions by institutionalizing their “job,” and they even had royal safeguards standing outside of the municipal buildings.