Weird History

What Was The Absolute Worst Time To Live In Different Countries?

Humanity has endured pretty terrible things in the last 2,000 years, from wars to natural disasters to virulent plagues. But what was the absolute worst time to live in certain countries? Or to put it another way, what events and natural disasters in history should you be glad every day that you didn't have to live through?

If you look at the major causes of death in different eras, it's easy to see how some time periods were objectively better than others. Tuscany is a fantastic place, but around 1348, the city was making corpse lasagna with plague victims. And if you've always wanted to see London, be glad it's not 1666, the year of the Great Plague and the Great Fire.

People sometimes claim the modern era is one of the worst times to be alive. In fact, the two weeks after March 26, 2020, are recorded as the "saddest" on Twitter since the site's conception. University of Vermont mathematicians Chris Danforth and Peter Dodds used a language tool called the "hedonometer" to track the relative emotional state of users in multiple languages. In an interview for Nature, Danforth and Dodds reported not only a major dip in the "global mood," but also an increase in tweet volume, likely because "both the pandemic and protests have been far more cohesive in terms of collective attention than anything we've ever seen."

Just remember, humanity always bounces back.