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Intl. Dinner: Earthquakes and Archaeology - The Catastrophic End of the Bronze Age @1200BC

Intl. Dinner: Earthquakes and Archaeology - The Catastrophic End of the Bronze Age @1200BC

In keeping with our December Int'l Talk tradition, this talk is a non-technical one in which non-geologist spouses, family members, and friends will also enjoy! We welcome them and encourage you to invite them! 

 

Abstract

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“Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice”

Will Durant, 1885-1981

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Earthquakes have traditionally been rejected as an important agent in past collapses and destructions. In this talk I show however that from a geophysics point of view, and especially our current knowledge of earthquake geography and plate tectonics, that this rejection is unwarranted and even a bit surprising given the great archaeological puzzles we face

  1. Why are there so many ruins around the Mediterranean basin?
  2. Why are there so many levels of destruction in many archaeological sites (e.g., Knossos-10, Jericho-22, Armageddon-32, Troy-45)?
  3. The inexplicable nature of regional destructions and system collapses.

One of the greatest collapses we know of is the catastrophic end of the Bronze Age ca. 1200 BC in the Aegean Sea and near East involving not only political and societal collapses but also the physical destruction of major capital cities such as Mycenae, Hausas, Ugarit and Troy, and important sites such as Armageddon and Jericho.

I show how a storm of earthquakes spanning perhaps 50 years between 1225 to 1175 BC could have been in part been responsible for or has triggered this regional collapse ranging from eastern Turkey to western Greece.

Specifically I show how an “earthquake storm” could have contributed to a “systems collapse” (Renfrew, 1981, 1987; Drews, 1993) at the end of the Late Bronze Age in the Aegean and Eastern Mediterranean: (2) The physical damage to defenses, monumental buildings, and people by this “earthquake storm” could have rendered key LBZ centers vulnerable to attack by outside invaders and by indigenous or neighboring populations; and (3) The destruction caused by an “earthquake storm” could have been the first link in a chain of events which led to the political, social, and economic “systems collapse” in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean ca. 1225-1175 BC.

Agenda:

5:30pm Social Hour

6:30pm Dinner

7:15pm Presentation

8:30pm Adjourn

Speaker Dr. Amos Nur, Dept. of Geophysics, Stanford University
Amos Nur was the founder and director of the Rock Physics and Borehole Geophysics in Stanford University since 1977. He has served as the Wayne Loel Professor of Earth Sciences since 1988. Amos earned his BS in geology at Hebrew University, Jerusalem, and his Ph.D. in Geophysics at MIT in ...

Amos Nur was the founder and director of the Rock Physics and Borehole Geophysics in Stanford University since 1977. He has served as the Wayne Loel Professor of Earth Sciences since 1988.


Amos earned his BS in geology at Hebrew University, Jerusalem, and his Ph.D. in Geophysics at MIT in 1969.


He was chair of the Geophysics Department, Stanford from 1986-1991 and from 1997- 2000. Amos was the SEG Distinguished Lecturer in 1997 and the AAPG Distinguished Lecturer in 1998.  Amos isan elected member of the National Academy of Engineering (2001), a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union (1976); Fellow, Geological Society of America (1980); Fellow, California Academy of Science (1990); and an honorary member of the Society of Exploration Geophysics (1996). He is the 2011 recipient of the Maurice Ewing medal of the Society of Exploration Geophysics.


Amos has published over 250 papers and 3 books.


In 1977 Amos founded the Stanford Rock Physics Consortium that at present has some 25 sponsoring oil companies and oil field service companies as members. Prof. Nur helped found Ingrain in 2007 after working with his colleagues in the Stanford's Rock Physics and Borehole project to create the patented numerical methods behind the company's technology. He joins Ingrain as a director and chief technology officer following his retirement in 2008.


Throughout his career, Prof. Nur has conducted critical researches in 3-D and 4-D seismic imaging and is widely considered to be one of the world's top academic authorities on rock physics. He also applies rock physics results to the understanding of tectonophysical processes in the Earth's crust and lithosphere. A major thrust of our rock physics involves the role of fluids in crustal processes and in energy resources.

Full Description
Organizer Joe Bauman, Intl. Committee Chair

When?

Wed, Dec. 21, 2016
5:30 p.m. - 9 p.m.
(GMT-0600) US/Central

Where?

Brookhaven Country Club
3333 Golfing Green Drive
Farmers Branch, Texas 75234
United States of America