a chronology of notable weather events

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A Chronology of Notable Weather Events


A Chronology of Notable Weather Events by Douglas V. Hoyt

Edition of 8/4/2011

243 A. D. An inundation of the sea in Lincolnshire laid under water many thousands of acres (Camden). 353 Flood in Cheshire in which 3000 people died along with thousands of cattle (Hayden). 402 Euxine Sea frozen over for 20 days (Hayden) 500 The Vandals from Poland held Western Africa, the Diocese of Africa, Visigoth (Western Goth) from Scandia held Spain, Ostrogoth (Eastern Goth) from Scandia held Italy, Germanic-Franks from Scandia held Gaul, Burgundians held Rhone river, and Celts, Germanic-Anglo-Saxon held the diocese of England. The massive migration of the Mongols, the Huns, Goth, Slav-Bulgars, and Avars westward is because of adverse weather conditions driving them from their lands . The Germanic-Danes inhabited the Danish Islands, Schonen, and later Jutland. St. Brendan (521-527) in his voyage to the northwest suggests the Celts of Ireland discovered America about this time. The Polynesian reached Hawaii and established agricultural settlements. These people had traveled 2500 miles from Island to Island. It is inconceivable that these peoples didn't reach America in the past 500 years. The Polynesians colonized Hawaii, Easter Island, and Madagascar by 500 A.D. 507 Men from Tsinngan, China report being blown across the Great Sea East to a people who speak a strange language. 508 In England, the rivers were frozen for more than two months (including Thames?). Possible severe winter. Rivers frozen for two months. Years also quoted as 507 or 509. 514 St. Brendan (484-577) of Ireland explored the area discovering the Hebrides, Orkney, Faeroe Islands and Iceland, starting about this time. In 554 he said for America.

520 Major storm surge in Cardigan Bay (B). 523 St. Brendan (484-577) of Ireland recounts how another monk told him of a land far to the west of Ireland, a land of plenty. St Brendan took this account seriously as he and 17 other monks spent 7 years to discover this land. If this be true then only two explanations exist, someone had traveled to America before this time or someone from American traveled to Europe. See 554. 525 City (Edessa), known as Antioch of the Fair Streams, in Mesopotamia is flooded. 530 The Humber River in England overflows and most cattle are drowned. "the earliest recorded flood that probably affected the River Trent valley was that of about 530 A.D., when the River Humber is known to have overflowed on to adjacent low-lying ground" 536 The Tweed River in Northumberland, England overflows and kills most of the cattle. A dry fog is reported (Trager) indicating a large volcanic eruption. Volcanic eruption (Rabaul / Papua-NG?) at around 4degS is estimated to have put around 300Mt of aerosols into the stratosphere (c.f. Tambora in 1815 of 200Mt which led to the 'year without a summer' q.v.). It is thought that the effects were experienced over the (then) known world, with a 'severe plague' in the years 541-544 possibly connected; up to 25% of the populations of Africa, Europe and Asia affected. (R.Met.S/'Weather' Feb. 2004): A 'famine'/shortage of bread noted over Ireland in 538. [some publications have the effects lasting until at least 555.] (B) 540 Legon refers to a comet recorded in Gaul and this records the beginning of the dark ages in Europe. Tree ring analysis suggests some catastrophic event effected the weather this year. In France and Italy, rain caused great floods. 542 Plague struck Constantinople and after four months more than half the population had died, some

three hundred thousand people. 544/545 Intensely cold winter (London / South) & possibly over a wider area (according to Easton, in CHMW/Lamb). 547 There appears to be a mass migration of the Angles or Engles from north of the Eyder River to Britain starting about this time. 549 This is consider the final year of the Roman Christian sponsored Gladiator Games that had been conducted for the past three hundred years. The stopping of these violent barbaric killing games are stopped because of economic decline rather than any moral or religious change of heart. In Greece, flooding from the sea submerges land. A storm in London throws down many houses and kills 250 people. Possible severe gale/storm in London; many houses damaged and several people killed. 553 Violent rain in Scotland for five months. 553/554 Severe winter in England: Some confusion between 545 & 554, but Easton (in Lamb/1.) notes both winters as being notably cold / severe. Winter 'so severe' with frost and snow that 'the birds and wild animals became so tame as to allow themselves to be taken by hand'. (A Meteorological Chronology, quoted in "The Long Summer"/Fagan ref: 20) 554 St. Brendan (484-577) of Ireland and 17 other monks set sail for the west from Ireland. The Navigatio Saint Brendani Abatis (Voyage of Saint Brendan) published in the 9th century, resulted in an island being recorded in the Atlantic Ocean called St. Brendan's Island. The Brendan voyage lasted 7 years, and they discovered a beautiful land that they called "The Promised Land of the Saints". Some suggest the land was America, most likely Virginia. The Ogham writings discovered in West Virginia suggests monks were in Virginia about this time verifying the Brendan account. Some say the Brendan saga loses credibility because it claims Brendan and company were "raised up on the back of sea monsters", This is not so absurd as it sounds if you have ever been in a small boat in a 45 foot swell, "they passed by crystals that rose

to the sky", an iceburg looks strangely like crystals, and we were "pelted with flaming, foul smelling rocks by the inhabitants of a large Island of their route", volcanic eruptions fits this description very well. The expedition traveled inland (Virginia) using a guide so the must have encountered the aboriginal Peoples. 556 A storm on the coast of Kent, Sussex, and Hampshire, England. 558 The Danube is frozen over. 565/566 A cold winter in England. (Easton, in CHMW/Lamb) 570 In Italy, great floods are caused by rain. 575 In England, Essex, Suffolk, and Norfolk are flooded from the sea. 579 In France and Italy, floods are accompanied by great rain. 586 North Sea: Floods and great storm in England (B). 590 In Italy, great floods are followed by the plague. In England, famine followed a great flood. Or in 589, Durham: storm flood - sea swept away villages, many drowned (B). 592 In England from January to September, a drought with locusts leads to famine. 592/593

A cold winter in England. (Easton, in CHMW/Lamb) 600 The Pict (paint people), and Celt routinely visited Iceland, Greenland and even Jan Mayen Island, Norway. The Picts are firmly established on Orkney, Shetland (Scotland) and Faeroes Islands (Norway). By 800 the Pict of Ireland would dominate Scotland and Northern England. The Kings of Svear extended their dominance from Uppsala to all of Sweden. 604 Severe frost in England. Also noted as a 'severe winter' in Scotland, with 4 months frost. (B) 605 In England, heat and drought lead to famine. 630 Thames flood in London. 634 Munster, Ireland is submerged and great damage is caused. Ulster, Ireland: Snow - killed many. (B) 649 Chester and Lancashire, England, are flooded from the sea. 669 In Kent, England, the Medway overflows causing great damage. 670 A deadly frost in England and scores die. 680 In England, after 3 years of drought, a famine occurs. 681

"When Wilfred arrived in Sussex in 680 or 681, the king, Aethelwalh, and his people were....entirely pagan.....Wilfred must be credited with a major role in converting the still largely pagan population of Sussex. He was able to capitalize on a severe drought, the end of which apparently coincided with his arrival in the kingdom. " According to legend, the drought (only certain for southern England) which ended in 681, and which was claimed to have lasted for three years, was broken on the day that Bishop Wilfrid converted the South Saxons to Christianity. (Actually, converting the King of the time, who would have then imposed the religion on his court and subsequently the people). Known as 'St. Wilfrid's drought'. (B) 684 The Isle of Sikokf, Japan, has 500000 acres submerged and thousands die. Ireland: Cold - lakes, rivers and sea froze. [ If this sort of weather was noted across Ireland, I would think that Britain would also have been affected: suggests anticyclonic / blocked, with an easterly type resulting. ] (B) 685 Ireland suffers great floods from the sea. Colored rain in England (usually an indicator of a major volcanic eruption in the weeks before the event .. Vesuvius & Etna were very active in 685: this would presumably imply south-easterly mid-tropospheric winds, indicating persistent upper-high pressure to the NE of the British Isles. (Various years given, from 684 to 689) (B) 690 Veneto and Liguria, Italy are flooded by incessant rain. 693 Ireland: Flooding due to heavy / prolonged rainfall - Leinster rivers flood for 3 days and nights. (B) 695 The Thames is frozen for six weeks and booths are built on it. Severe winter. Thames frozen for six weeks - booths were built on the thick ice. (B) 701 A storm in London destroys 100 homes.

720 Wales - very hot summer (and assumed to be dry). (B) [or perhaps721] 730 A flood at Edinburgh with great damage. 737 Great drought .. London/South. (B) 738 "Great flood in Glasgow region" 400 families drowned. Scotland: flood (assumed to be due to heavy / intense rainfall) - 400 families drowned in Glasgow. (B) 741 Great drought .. London/South. (B) 746 Constantinople is visited by plague that then spread to Italy and Greece killing some two hundred thousand people. 748 Ireland - Great snow destroyed herds. This would have been a major disaster. (B) 758 Glasgow, Scotland, is flooded and 400 families perish (Hayden). 760 In England, a frost from October 1 to February 26. A cold winter in England. (E