The UNESCO World Heritage site “Caliphal City of Medina Azahara” in southern Spain was built in the 10th Century by the first Caliph of al-Andalus, Abd al-Rahman III. The destruction and consequent abandonment of the city were thought to result from a civil war between 1009/10 AD. In a new paper, Rodríguez Pascua et al. investigate the role of an earthquake in the sudden abandonment and ruin of the city. They identified eleven types of Earthquake Archaeological Effects (EAEs), including dropped key stones in arches, tilted walls, conjugated fractures in brick-made walls, conjugated fractures and folds in regular pavements, and dipping broken corners in columns. More than 150 structural measurements imply mean ground motion direction of N140°–160° E. This indicates oriented damage to the buildings. From recent events such as the Lorca Earthquake we know that this pattern can be caused by earthquakes. The authors conclude that probably two strong earthquakes with intensities ≥VIII MSK/EMS occurred in the 11th and 12th centuries AD.more
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New paper on Archaeoseismological Evidence of Seismic Damage at Medina Azahara (Córdoba, Spain) from the Early 11th Century by Rodríguez Pascua et al.2023-02-17 | in Paper
7th International Colloquium on Historical Earthquakes & Paleoseismology Studies, 4-6 Nov 2019, Barcelona2019-02-19 | in Meeting
The 7th International Colloquium on Historical Earthquakes & Paleoseismology Studies will be held from 4-6 November, 2019, in Barcelona (Spain). The conference website is now online (https://cloud.agoraevent.fr/Site/134404/5997/Event).
15 February 2019: Opening for submission for abstracts
15 September 2019: Deadline for submission of abstracts
7th International Colloquium on Historical Earthquakes & Paleoseismology Studies, 4-6 November, 2019, Barcelona2019-01-07 | in Meeting | 6 responses
Save the date: The 7th International Colloquium on Historical earthquakes & paleoseismology studies will be held from 4-6 November, 2019, in Barcelona (Spain). The colloquium is organized by RESIF (French seismologic and geodetic network), and ICGC (cartographic and geological institute of Catalonia) with POCRISC Project. Further information will be available in January.
Great news reached us from Spain! Our colleague Julián Garcia Mayordomo spread the news that an updated version of the Quaternary Active Faults Database of Iberia (QAFI) is now available online. QAFI has a GoogleMaps-based interface with clickable features providing loads of content on fault geometry, fault mechanism, slip-rate, historical and pre-historical seismicity, geomorphology, compilers, further references and much more. Truly a wonderful tool, congratulations!
2016-02-05 | in Paper
Here’s the February edition of my paper recommendations. This time we have:
- Paleoseismology in Germany and Nepal (the latter with a focus on charcoal dating techniques),
- Tsunamis in Greece, Portugal, Israel and Alaska,
- Turbidites in Portugal,
- New insights into the geodynamics of Mozambique,
- Fault rheology in Iran,
- Rupture jumps on strike‐slip faults, and
- A MATLAB tool for seismic hazard calculations.
Guest blog by Marta Ferrater (Uni Barcelona): Lateral Offset Quality Rating along Low Slip Rate Faults2015-12-14 | in Paper
Marta Ferrater from the Universitat de Barcelona did a lot of research on the Alhama de Murcia Fault. Her most recent paper deals with how good we can measure lateral offsets along faults which move only very slowly. This is probably of great interest for many people working on slow faults, so I am glad that she agreed to write the following guest post: more
2015-07-19 | in Paper
Lots of paleoseismology and tsunami studies are currently being published… Here’s my update on the latest papers, including: Surface ruptures, seismic swarms, tsunamites, Asian tectonics, slip rates and archaeoseismology. Plus: A very interesting study on the 1911 Chon-Kemin M8.0 earthquake in the Kazakhstan/Kyrgyzstan border region, the source process reconstruced from analogue seismograms. Thanks to Ramon Arrowsmith for pointing me to this one. Enjoy!
Spain may not be as famous for its earthquakes as Greece, Turkey or Italy, but significant events do shake the western part of the Mediterranean, too. Numerous paleoseismological and archaeoseismological studies as well as research on historical quakes have been undertaken on the Iberian peninsula. A new book was now published by the IGME which collects all the information currently available on the geological effects of earthquakes in Spain. The book is in Spanish and available for free download here:
The catalogue includes 44 quakes between 218 BC and AD 2011.
Second meeting on Active Faults and Paleoseismology in two weeks, so I am on the road again. Today, the 2nd Iberfault meeting in Lorca/Murcia/Spain starts focussing on A multidisciplinary approach to the study of active faults, earthquakes and seismic risk. After the very successful first meeting in Sigüenza/Guadalajara/Spain in 2010 after four years now the city of Lorca is the host. The reason is simple: a magnitude 5.1 earthquake struck the area, leaving the region with the relative high number of 9 casualties, 100 Mio. € damage and a series of scientific papers that e.g. this earthquake was anthropogenically induced by water expulsion (it was discussed here a couple of months ago by Christoph). more