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Stories by David Bressan

September 7, 1936: The last Thylacine

September 7, 1936 the last thylacine ( Thylacinus cynocephalus ) died at the Hobart Zoo (Tasmania). Modern legends attributed him the name Benjamin and a gruesome death - neglected and forgotten he (or more probably she) died from depression and the harsh weather...

September 7, 2011 — David Bressan

September 4, 1618: The landslide of Plurs

" Truthful and terrible new description/ from the sudden destruction/ of the well known village of Plurs in Bergel/ and situated in the provinces of Bünten/ how suddenly a landslide came down from the mountain/ and the entire village in a moment covered/ elevated from ground/ buried/ thrown away and eradicated/ occurred in this year 1618...

September 4, 2011 — David Bressan

September 2, 1806: The landslide of Goldau

" The morning of this sorrowful day begun with strong rain, which became less and lesser until at midday it stopped. Already in the early morning there were fissures in the earth and cracks in the meadows visible...

September 2, 2011 — David Bressan

August 27, 1883: Krakatoa

"Perhaps, however, the most important evidence of what was actually going on at Krakatoa during the crisis of the eruption is that derived from witnesses on board ships which sailed between Java and Sumatra while the great outburst was in progress, or those that were at the time in the immediate vicinity of either the eastern or western entrance of the Sunda Strait...

August 27, 2011 — David Bressan

Earthquakey Times

Earthquakes are the results of the sudden release of accumulated stress in the brittle crust of earth. This energy accumulation is caused by the friction and deformation (strain) of rocks, most pronounced where tectonic plates collide or touch...

August 25, 2011 — David Bressan

Cities and Geological Risk

"Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice." Will Durant (1885 - 1981) American writer, historian, and philosopher Fig.1.

August 19, 2011 — David Bressan

On the Extinction of Species

The Dodo by Hilaire Belloc The Dodo used to walk around, And take the sun and air. The sun yet warms his native ground– The Dodo is not there!

August 17, 2011 — David Bressan

Hydrochemistry on the Rocks

It is considered one of the oldest foods and most appreciated beverages of the world - chemical remains were found on fragments of a more than 4.000 old jar, the Mesopotamians guaranteed its purity by death penalty and the old Egyptian considered it an essential part of the afterlife - the preferred drink of the gods of the Vikings - and today of geologist, known also as beer.Geologists love beer for a simple reason: it makes you think a lot about geology…(and as a popular side-effect it is tasty)...

August 2, 2011 — David Bressan

The Younger Dryas Impact Hypothesis

The causes that led to the extinction of most of the larger mammals - also referred as Megafauna- that roamed the Pleistocene world are still highly controversial and fiercely discussed...

July 27, 2011 — David Bressan

Time for a new epoch? - the Anthropocene

The notion that the influence on earth's systems by humankind is so great that this phase of earth's history needs a proper name is not new, already in 1873 the Italian geologist Antonio Stoppani suggested the term Anthropozoic , in 1879 the American geologist Joseph LeConte discusses in his textbook the Psychozoic and in 1927 the French philosoph Édouard Louis Emmanuel Julien Le Roy adopts the Noosphere from Russian mineralogist Vladimir Vernadsky to denote the third epoch of earth - after the inanimate geosphere and animate biosphere the epoch of human thought has begun...

July 22, 2011 — David Bressan

It's sedimentary, my dear Watson

On February 20, 1949 Mrs. Henrietta Helen Olivia Roberts Durand-Deacon, a sixty-nine-year-old wealthy widow, disappeared from the Onslow Court Hotel located in South Kensington, London.

July 18, 2011 — David Bressan

The discovery of the periglacial realm

With this first regular post I would briefly introduce one of my favourite field (in the geological sense) of interests - the periglacial zone and one of its largest and most characteristic landscape features.The term periglacial was introduced by the Polish geologist Walery von Lozinsk in 1910 and 1911 to describe the particular mechanical weathering he had observed in sandstones of the Gorgany Range in the southern Carpathian Mountains...

July 7, 2011 — David Bressan
Thoughts on a Pebble

Thoughts on a Pebble

Prologue: “Deep in the forest a man sitting on a large stone once heard a voice. “Do you want to hear a story?” The man looked up, and wondered, because nobody was there...

July 5, 2011 — David Bressan

The discovery of the ruins of ice: The birth of glacier research

"It has already been said, that no small part of the present work refers to the nature and phenomena of glaciers. It may be well, therefore, before proceeding to details, to explain a little the state of our present knowledge respecting these great ice-masses, which are objects of a kind to interest even those who know them only from description, whilst those who have actually witnessed their wonderfully striking and grand characteristics can hardly need an inducement to enter into some inquiry respecting their nature and origin." James, D...

January 3, 2011 — David Bressan
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