I’ve stood upon Achilles’ tomb, And heard Troy doubted: time will doubt of Rome… Byron


Stereograph showing man standing on column slabs in front of two mounds. Storied remnants of one time magnificence - centre of ancient Troy.

Stereograph showing man standing on column slabs in front of two mounds. Storied remnants of one time magnificence – centre of ancient Troy.

Apocalypse: earthquakes, archaeology, and the wrath of God Princeton: Princeton University Press, c 2008 Amos Nur; with Dawn Burgess Archaeology and natural disasters Hardcover. xi, 309 p.: ill., maps; 24 cm. Includes bibliographical references (p. [289]-304) and index. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text. VG/VG

Road to Jericho, Jordan, etc. Ruins of ancient Jericho, from the east.

Road to Jericho, Jordan, etc. Ruins of ancient Jericho, from the east.

What if Troy was not destroyed in the epic battle immortalized by Homer? What if many legendary cities of the ancient world did not meet their ends through war and conquest as archaeologists and historians believe, but in fact were laid waste by a force of nature so catastrophic that legends would describe it as the wrath of a god?

Ruins on Crete, Knossos. Center of Minoan civilization. Castle with flush toilets, sewage system, water piped in from 7 miles away

Ruins on Crete, Knossos. Center of Minoan civilization. Castle with flush toilets, sewage system, water piped in from 7 miles away

Apocalypse brings the latest scientific evidence to bear on ancient accounts, mythology, and the archaeological record to explore how ancient and modern earthquakes have shaped history – and, for some civilizations, seemingly heralded the end of the world.

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Archaeologists are trained to seek human causes behind the ruins they study. Because of this, the subtle clues that indicate earthquake damage are sometimes overlooked or not properly explored. Amos Nur claims to bridge a gap that he perceives has separated archaeology and seismology. He examines conjectural evidence of earthquakes at some of the world’s most famous archaeological sites in the Mediterranean and elsewhere, including Troy, Jericho, Knossos, Mycenae, Armageddon, Teotihuacán, and Petra.

Pyramid of Quetzalcoatl, Teotihuacán, Mexico

Pyramid of Quetzalcoatl, Teotihuacán, Mexico

He reveals what the Iliad, and other writings can tell us about the seismic calamities that may have rocked the ancient world. Nur theorizes, recognizing earthquake damage in the shifted foundations and toppled arches of historic ruins is vital today because the scientific record of world earthquake risks is still incomplete. Apocalypse explains where and why ancient earthquakes may have struck – and could strike again, assuming they are predictable.

Excavated mansions of Petra, Petra, March 7, 1839

Excavated mansions of Petra, Petra, March 7, 1839

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