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BBC

The myths that hint at past disasters

The myths that hint at past disasters

bbc.com

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Studies show that a large part of Stinson Beach near San Francisco will be under a foot of water in less than 20 years. Many think the 21st Century is the first time we faced this kind of event, but it is not.

Sea levels started to rise nearly 15,000 years ago with the end of the last ice a...

Geologists realise that there's factual information in some of the oldest traditions and stories. Many of the tales can provide insight into what might have happened thousands of years ago when the ice sheets melted and give us an understanding that may save lives in the future.

Most Aboriginal Australian stories about the changes in landscape and way of life caused by post-glacial sea-level rise are divided into two groups.

  • One story is that the bad behaviour of a man named Goonyah caused the sea to flood the land, and he organised the people to stop it.
  • ...

The ancient stories of fighting a losing battle against the sea are concentrated along the coast of Brittany, the Channel Islands, Cornwall and Wales.

  • In Britanny, the city of Ys was said to be protected by a series of sea defences that required gates to open at low tide. Then the King...

  • While some conventionally trained geologists are curious about mythic stories, others don't like it, missing out on the kernels of truth embedded in the narratives.
  • Literate people are also sceptical about the power of oral traditions.
  • If academics don't follow good practice ...

  • The first-ever session that helped to validate geomythology in the minds of scientists was held in 2004 at the International Geological Congress. 
  • Historian Adrienne Mayor wrote The First Fossil Hunters (2000). The book was the first systematic study of the evidence for the ancient d...

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