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The impact of volcanic eruptions on the civilizations of the Mediterranean during the Bronze Age

Název česky Vliv sopečných erupcí na civilizace ve Středomoří v průběhu doby bronzové


Rok publikování 2016
Druh Konferenční abstrakty
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Filozofická fakulta

Popis So called Avellino eruption of Mt Vesuvius (VEI>5) was a catastrophe nearly as disastrous as the infamous eruption in 79 AD. According to a recent study, it took place in the mid-20th century by the end of the Palma-Campania culture. This event is a graphic example of the local impact of a volcanic eruption. The local impact was caused mainly by the pyroclastic flows, that demonstrated their great destructive power on the landscape within the radius of 10-15 kilometers. These consequences are still visible on the Bronze Age settlements of Nola and Afragola. These locations provide us with the remains of human settlements and even the footprints, that were all conserved thanks to the eruption. It were these footprints that prove a mass exodus of the population during the eruption itself. The explosive eruption on the island of Thera (VEI>7) took place around 1600 BC. This eruption is considered to be one of the most disastrous volcanic eruptions in the Mediterranean ever. The local impact of this catastrophe include the complete devastation of the island and its abandonment for the next few centuries and can be well demonstrated on the site of Akrotiri. The regional effects include the extensive fallout of the volcanic ashes, the possible climate change caused by massive ash plume , the seismic activity, the pumice dispersal by the oceanic streams and the tsunami. The evidence of these consequences can be traced in the geological and archaeological sources. There is a regional cultural decline that is often being mentioned in connection with this eruption. Although until this day, we can still notice doubts concerning the problematics of the real impact of the eruption on the cultures of the south Aegean region and of the eastern Mediterranean. In my paper I discuss the record of both events in up to now discovered archaeological contexts.
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