3600 Years Ago:
In the July 15, 1999 paper published by the journal, Geophysical Research
Letters, the Sahara desert's arid climate change occurred quickly and
dramatically 4000 to 3600 years ago. A team of researchers headed by Martin Cluassen of Germany's Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact research analyzed
computer models of climate over the past several thousand years. They
concluded that the change to today's desert climate in the Sahara was
triggered by changes in the Earth's orbit and the tilt of Earth's axis. The
switch in North Africa's climate and vegetation was abrupt. In the Sahara, "we
find an abrupt decrease in vegetation from a green Sahara to a desert
scrubland within a few hundred years" scientists reported. No longer were
grasses and other plants collecting water and releasing it back into the
atmosphere; now sand baked in the stronger sun and rivers dried up. The
scientists do not say what caused the change in the tilt of Earth's axis.
An unknown civilization with an alphabet that has yet to be deciphered lived
in the Indus Valley (W. Pakistan). Around 1550 BC they disappeared.
In the twenty-ninth year of King Chieh [the last ruler of Hsia, the earliest
recorded Chinese dynasty], the Sun was dimmed... King Chieh lacked virtue...
the Sun was distressed... during the last years of Chieh ice formed in [summer]
mornings and frosts in the sixth month [July]. Heavy rainfall toppled
temples and buildings... Heaven gave severe orders. The Sun and Moon were
untimely. Hot and cold weather arrived in disorder. The five cereal crops
withered and died. Written during the reign of Emperor Qin c.1600 B.C.
Around 1500 BC a civilization arose on the banks of the Hwang Ho River
north central China.
The 1st dynasty of Babylon ended in 1595 BC.
In the Semitic culture, Hyksos was deposed in 1570 BC, and the Jewish exodus
led by Moses happened shortly thereafter. This featured a river Nile filled
with "blood" and water they could not drink.
The Cycladic settlement on the island of Thera was destroyed by a great
volcanic eruption about 1600 BC.
- Hittite internal strife caused great disorder and ended in 1525 BC with
- China gave birth to one of the earliest civilizations and has a recorded
history that dates from some 3,500 years ago.
Pottery pieces found in Fiji suggest the islands were settled in the west
from Melanesia at least 3,500 years ago.
Iron manufacturing originated about 3,500 years ago when iron ore was
accidentally heated in the presence of charcoal.
The Tongon and Samoan islands were probably settled from Fiji about 3,500
The Santorini eruption (about 1500 BC) was several times greater in scope
than the 1883 Krakatoa eruption.
Research by W. A. Johnston of the Niagara River bed disclosed that the
present channel was cut by the falls less than 4000 years ago. Careful study
of the Bear River delta by Hanson showed the age of this delta was 3,600
A study by Claude Jones of the Great Lakes showed that these lakes have
existed only 3,500 years. This is confirmed by several geographic historical
maps of Michigan available in Michigan libraries. Gales obtained the same
result on Owen Lake in California. Van Winkle obtained the same result on
Albert and Summer lakes in Oregon.
Radiocarbon analysis by Libby also indicates that plants associated with
mastodons in Mexico are probably only about 3,500 years old. Similar
conclusions concerning the late survival of the Pleistocene fauna were drawn
by various field workers in many parts of the American continent.
From observations on beaches throughout the world, Daly concluded that there
was a change in the ocean level, which dropped sixteen to twenty feet 3,500
years ago. Kuenen and others confirmed Daly’s findings with evidence derived
7200 Years Ago:
According to Basil Davidson, author of Lost Cities of Africa, new types of
humanity appeared in Africa around 5,000 BC
According to Ancient Europe by Stuart Pigget, stone using agricultural
peasantry began in Europe near 5,000 BC
According to December 17, 1996 New York Times article titled Black Sea
Deluge May Be Tied to Spread of Farming in Europe, an international team of
geologists and oceanographers reconstructed the history of a catastrophic
flood from data gathered by a Russian research ship in 1993. Seismic
soundings and sediment cores revealed traces of the sea's former shorelines,
showing an abrupt 500-foot rise in water levels. Radiocarbon dating of the
transition from fresh water to marine organisms in the cores put the time of
the event at about 7,700 years ago (5,500 BC).
According to the September 10, 1996 issue of the Seattle Times: the research
ship JOIDES (Joint Oceanographic Institutions for the Deep Earth Sampling)
Resolution "could easily see the light colored ash deposited from the
eruption of Oregon’s Mount Mazama 6,950 years ago. That titanic eruption
created Crater Lake and threw out at least 40 times as much magma as Mount
St. Helens did in 1980 and serves as a useful marker to date mud layers.
JOIDES is a Hubble telescope for the ocean, the most advanced drilling
vessel in the world". It has 12 laboratories, more than 100 research
computers and can drill in water up to 27,000 feet deep. "The planet appears
to operate in a quasi-stable mode and pops up to a new state,” said NSF’s
A giant wave flooded Scotland about 7,000 years ago, a scientist revealed on
Friday. The tsunami left a trail of destruction along what is now the
eastern coast of the country. Scientists believe a landslide on the ocean
floor off Storegga, southwest Norway, triggered the wave. Speaking at the
British Association Festival of Science in Glasgow, Professor David Smith
said a tsunami could strike again in the area but the probability was
extremely unlikely. Radiocarbon dating of sediments taken from the coastline
of eastern Scotland put the date of the event at about 5,800 BC. At the
time, Britain was joined to mainland Europe by a land bridge. Settlers at
the time would have had little warning of the disaster, scientists believe.
But a scattering of tools found in the sand at a hunting camp in Inverness
yields some clues. 'Very destructive' "It looks as if those people were
happily sitting in their camp when this wave from the sea hit the camp,"
Professor Smith of the department of Geography at Coventry University told
BBC News Online. "We're talking about two, three or four large waves
followed by little ones, that would have been 5-10 meters high. “These waves
do strike with such force that they are very destructive," he added. "It's
like being hit by an express train."
The research provides an opportunity to assess the hazard of tsunamis in
more detail. They occur frequently in the Pacific Ocean due to underwater
earthquakes, landslides and volcanic explosions. Long, uncertain history
Scientists hope to find more evidence of similar past tsunamis in eastern
Scotland to predict the frequency of the destructive waves. Studies of
coastal sediments show that it may be possible to develop a record of past
tsunamis extending back several millennia. Dr Ted Nield, of the Geological
Society of London, said: "These events have a long and uncertain time scale. While there is no reason for mass panic, the possibility exists that the Storegga slide will go again, and it would be imprudent to ignore that
10,800 Years Ago:
The discovery of a forest 11,000 years old buried intact in Michigan, with
treetops poking through the sand, has raised alarm about the possible speed
of global warming. The five-acre forest of hundreds of spruce, just over ten
miles from the shore of Lake Superior, was covered with sand and water when
a nearby glacier melted at the end of the Ice Age. What has shocked
scientists is that analysis of the tree-rings shows that the climate warmed
so rapidly that it left no mark on the normal growth of the trees before
they were flooded. "It's kind of scary. The conclusion, based on the tree
rings, is that there was no real warning of the dramatic warming that caused
the glacier to melt," Theodore Bornhorst, Professor of Geology at
Technological University, said. "The question today is whether we would get
no warning of a real dramatic warming. "What it says is that, in 50 years'
time, we could have a dramatic shift in climate," he said. "If the ice cap
started melting, sea levels would rise dramatically, with major problems for
The heyday of the woolly mammoth was the Pleistocene Epoch, stretching from
1.8 million years ago to the end of the last ice age 11,000 years ago.
Mammoths thrived particularly well in Siberia, where dry grasslands once
stretched for hundreds of miles, supporting a vibrant ecosystem of mammoths,
bison, and other jumbo herbivores. The mammoth fossils on Wrangel Island
the youngest that have ever been found. It was there, apparently, that
mammoths made their last stand. They died out only 3,800 years ago.
It had always been thought that the mammoth died out about ten thousand
years ago, with the end of the ice age, but the tusk appeared to be 7,000
years old. It was so unlikely, so Buttanyan tested five more tusks, but the
new dates pointed to an even more remarkable conclusion. Hidden up here
[Wrangel Island] in the Arctic, the mammoth hadn't just survived the end of
the ice age; it was walking these hills at the time of the Egyptian
Pharaohs, only 3500 years ago. This discovery has led to the re-examination
of the complex chain of 'cause and effect' that made mammoths die out
everywhere else, and in the process has revitalized the whole debate about
how species might avoid extinction.