In 1349, the Jewish population of Krems, Germany, was massacred in the Black Death riots. In the Middle Ages, people were unaware that lack of hygiene caused the spread of bacteria, and the bubonic plague ("Black Death") spread quickly -- killing 25 million people, half the population of Europe. Rumors spread that Jews were poisoning the well water, and riots broke out across Europe. In some cities, Jews were burned alive.
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