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Have ancients transmitted information for 12,000 years till present? (cont.)
By Ritesh Singh, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur

Sea-level records from Vostok and Byrd in Antarctica, Huascaran, Greenland, and Sajama in Bolivia (using Nitrate as a proxy) show that temperatures in the 10th millennium BCE were either just starting to rapidly increase from a local minima or were undergoing a local minima followed by rapid rising of temperatures (2). Some other records are inconclusive (2). Moreover, all the mentioned records except that of Sajama show that the rise that began in 10th millennium BCE culminated in attainment of highest temperatures in the last 25,000 years (ignoring small timescale fluctuations). Volcanism also increased rapidly in this period to two-six times the background levels (3). Moreover, CO2 recorded in Antarctic ice cores shows that it started increasing rapidly in this period (3). These data suggest that the time period corresponding to RSB in 10th millennium BCE was characterized by large scale melting of ice resulting in flooding of rivers, rise in sea levels and increase in natural disasters associated with climate change (1, 2, 4).

All of the ancient civilizations lived on the banks of rivers. So, usual flooding of rivers would not have been such a surprising event for it to be given so much importance in the literature. And since usual river flooding would have happened very often it could not possibly have been associated with such an extremely rare event like RSB. These discrepancies are removed if we consider that the myth could be pointing to end of Last Glacial Maximum (eLGM).

Furthermore, sea-level records, using various proxies, from Lambert glacier region, Soya coast, Vestfold hills and Windmill islands in Antarctica (5) and those from the Great Barrier reef, Senegal river, Negril, Black river in Jamaica, Barbados, Huan peninsula, Tahiti and Malaysia (4) and Greenland (3) show that the period close to that of RSB in the sixth millennium BCE was characterized by attainment of highest sea levels in the last 10-25 kiloannum. Moreover, all the mentioned records except Greenland show sharp reduction in the rate of global warming and temperatures becoming more or less constant (relative to the rapid rise) during this time (4, 5) (data from Malaysia, Huascaran and Guliya (China) (2) even suggest that the sea levels started decreasing during this time) (4). Moreover, volcanism decreased rapidly and was quite less compared to 10th millennium BCE during this time (3). Furthermore, rate of change of atmospheric CO2 had become negligible by this time (3).

Thus, the association of RSB with massive flooding would have occurred in the 10th millennium BCE which would have been confirmed in the sixth millennium BCE. They would have noted that beginning, peak and end of massive flooding happened with events of RSB. They would also have noted the high rarity of RSB as well as the high rarity of sea level rise. With so many observations co-aligning the formation of myth seems very logical. Although (1) cites indications of rate of sea level rise increasing in Maine in the sixth millennium BCE, it does not seem to be a global phenomenon.

Below, I consider all relevant natural disasters given in (6) (except floods) and some others. Consensus is growing on the issue that the following natural disasters may increase in magnitude and/or frequency because of climate change such as that which occurred at eLGM: avalanche (8), blizzards (9, 10), droughts (9, 11, 12), dust storms and wind storms (9), earthquakes and resulting tsunamis (13, 14) (eLGM would have caused earthquakes because of postglacial rebound and because water due to severe flooding could percolate through fracture zones leading to increase in pore pressure), El Nino Southern Oscillation (7, 15), cyclones and tornadoes (6, 9), landslides (9), heavy precipitation (10, 16-18), volcanoes (3, 19), wildfires (9, 20), thunderstorms (10, 17), pandemics and insect outbreaks (9, 21, 22), health problems (23) and difficulties in adaptation; and famines due to adverse effects on plants and animals (12).

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