Pandemics Across History That Changed The World

First Cholera Pandemic - Asia, 1817

#17 First Cholera Pandemic – Asia, 1817

The first cholera pandemic started in 1817 in the town of Jessore (now in Bangladesh), which later escalated into a pandemic due to a major Hindu pilgrimage and festival, the Kumbha Mela. The disease spread outside the Ganges Delta and extended to most of India, modern-day Myanmar and modern-day Sri Lanka.

By 1820, the cholera pandemic hit South-East Asian countries including Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines, claiming the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. From 1821 to 1822, the pandemic grappled many of the Middle Eastern countries as well as Japan and China.

The transmission of the disease ended sometime in 1824 when it reached Russia, perhaps due to the extreme cold. According to historians, trade and warfare contributed to the dispersion of the disease.

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