by Laura Knight-Jadczyk
27 March 2008
Astronomy books and papers
far too numerous to cite offer the assurance that "no
one has ever been killed by a meteorite."
(John S. Lewis,
University of Arizona)
Over the past few years, while sott.net
has been tracking the increasing flux of fireballs and meteorites
entering the earth's atmosphere, we have been, by turns, amused and
horrified at the ignorant reactions and declarations that issue from
academia and the media regarding these incursions.
A few years ago, we read that "this is a
'once in a hundred years' event!" Not long after it was a "once in a
Still later, after a lot more incidents
it became a "once in a decade" event. More recently, it has been
admitted in some quarters that meteorites hit the ground (as opposed
to safely burning up in the atmosphere) several times a year! And of
course, we have discovered the fact that the governments of our
planet are well aware that there are atmospheric explosions from
such bodies numerous times a year.
We have also learned in this series that
the frequent reports of unusual booms and shaking of the ground is
often due to such overhead explosions.
Yet the media steadfastly refuses to
honestly address this issue, though we have noted a plethora of
recent articles presenting opposing academic arguments designed to
put the populace back to sleep, to reassure them that there is
nothing to worry about, that such things only happen every 100,000
years or so, and certainly, the Space Watch Program is going
to find all the possible impactors and take care of things.
Recent articles we have covered include:
Top Scientists Want Research Free From
Leading U.S. scientists called on Congress Thursday to make sure
the next president does not do what they say the George W.
Bush Administration has done: censor, suppress and falsify
important environmental and health research. [...]
Among the more than 15,000 government scientists signing onto
the statement are Harold Varmus, president of Memorial
Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre and former director of the
National Institutes of Health (NIH); and Anthony
Robbins, professor of medicine at Tufts University
and former director of the National Institute for
Occupational Safety and Health.
"Although surely the worst, the
Bush Administration is not the first, nor will it be the
last administration to mistreat and misuse science and
scientists," Robbins said.
"The White House itself has been
directly involved in the suppression and falsification of
science," Robbins stressed.
But interference from the White
House is just part of the problem, said Francesca Grifo,
a former government researcher and now a director at the
Union of Concerned Scientists. Industry lobbyists are all
over government agencies, trying to influence research that will
impact their corporations, she said.
"These special interest groups
are being given access at the highest level."
"Government scientists have had their findings subjected to
censorship and misrepresentation," said Kurt Gottfried,
professor of physics at Cornell University and a member of
the Union of Concerned Scientists. "The public and Congress
have often been deprived of accurate and candid scientific
"The pursuit of science in an open society has had a long
and fruitful tradition in America," Gottfried said.
"Unfortunately, this tradition has been violated in recent
years by the government itself."
Government's funding framework breeds
Here is a list of beliefs in the biomedical and climate sciences
that must not be questioned if you're applying for a government
That global warming is
caused by humans
That AIDS is caused by a
That radiation, cigarette
smoke and other toxins are dangerous in proportion to
their strength, no matter how small the dose
That heart disease is caused
by saturated fats
That cancer is caused by
This is part of a list offered by a
University of Washington professor of surgery, Donald W.
Miller, who is a heart surgeon at the VA Medical Center in
Seattle. Miller believes that all the above ideas may be
false, and ought to be tested. [...]
But much of science runs on government money. Some people find
the stink of bias only in private money, and see government as
free of it, but they are mistaken. Government likes certain
beliefs. To get its money, you have to get the approval of the
scientists it selects, and you are less likely to get it if they
think your idea wrong.
What that means, Miller says, is that,
"If you say low doses of
radiation aren't bad for you, or that global warming is due
to variations in the sun, you can't get funded."
He says this happened to University
of California scientist Peter Dues-berg, who challenged the
viral theory of AIDS, and to Harvard's Willie Soon, who
challenged the pollution theory of global warming, and to
others. In a paper published in 2007 in the Journal of
Information Ethics, Miller argued that conformity is built
into the system of government grants. [...]
In 2005, in the scientific journal Cellular and Molecular
Biology, Pollack made an argument similar to
Miller's. American science, he wrote, has become "a culture of
believers" whose rule is, "just keep it safe and get your
For science, the result has not been good. [...]
Thomas Kuhn, the philosopher of science, argued famously
that science progresses in revolutionary bursts, in which the
"dominant paradigm" is overturned. But what if the supporters of
the dominant paradigm are the people vetting your application?
We most certainly can see that the issue
of meteorite, cometary and asteroid impacts on our planet,
and their true potential danger to each and every one of us, must be
added to this list of unfunded research.
This is a very bad and dangerous state of affairs.
As Victor Clube wrote in his
letter to SOTT.net:
First, I should say your references
to the (cosmically complacent) paleoclimate community and to my
otherwise unread narrative report to the USAF European office
strike a very considerable chord with me. After all neither Ms
Victoria Cox nor your good self can be aware how very
much Bill and I had reason to appreciate the timely injection of
USAF funds at a time when the line of research we championed
appeared to be successfully closed down by the UK scientific
Thus we were both in turn obliged to
relinquish our career posts at the Royal Observatory,
Edinburgh on account of this line of research - which gave rise
to our reincarnation at a more tolerant haven namely my alma
Also, whilst I broadly accept your commentary regarding the role
of "national elites" in the face of near-Earth threats, I am
quite certain the elites in practice currently know VERY "much
LESS than they let on" and that the situation for humanity is
dire. Any comfort you may draw from the opposite opinion seems
to me to be entirely misplaced.
Thus although the globally modest
efforts to assess the NEO threat with telescopes by a few
semi-enlightened national administrations (eg USA) or by a few
private enterprises (eg Gates) are certainly to be commended, I
look upon this aspect of the NEO threat as basically
intermittent and therefore more or less symbolic so far
as generally more urgent and still largely undetected low mass
NEO flux (which is demonstrably climatological in its effect) is
This particular threat (evidently
responsible for our planet's evolving glacial/interglacial
condition during the past 3 million years) is of course
'fundamentally' ignored by the current Body Scientific and hence
by most of humanity as well.
And so, it seems, we here at SOTT.net,
and some brave souls with the good of humanity at heart, are on
their own, opposed by the governments that are supposed to be in
place to look after the interests of their people.
Of course, the question arises: what led to this general and overall
blindness on the part of the people we look to for interpretation
and explanation of our reality? How can the people who write
textbooks, teach in schools, even at the highest level, be so
ignorant? The consequences of this ignorance are, after all,
detrimental to everyone for many reasons, not the least of which is
simple survival in a rather hostile environment.
The events that have been covered so far in this series have led us
to understand that there have been many times when it is highly
probable that the earth - or parts thereof - was bombarded with
meteorites or exploding aerial cometary fragments. These events
occurred, and were probably related to, periods of great stress on
the environment and humanity as a whole.
Climate changes brought floods,
droughts, extreme temperatures, crop failures and famine. These
pressures may have caused lowered disease resistance for given
populations, and it is also conjectured that extra-terrestrial
bombardments may have carried disease pathogens. Impacts or crustal
disturbances could have placed stresses on the geological structures
so that outgassings from fissures, the ocean, or lakes may have
poisoned large numbers of people, not to mention the record of
tsunamis that is now called into question.
Do we know, for example, that the
Christmas tsunami-causing earthquake near Malaysia was not impact
induced? No, we don't.
And we can't trust either our
governments or the news media - or even most of academia who owe
their livelihoods to the government - to tell us the truth.
Why do they lie to us?
Well, the main reason is rather simple: it's all about control.
All of these things, taken together, place intolerable stresses on
the human social organism and, as is typical for human beings, this
brings on a crisis of faith, demands for answers, demands for
protection that governments simply find it too expensive to provide.
When the world shows itself to be a hostile environment, when the
environment suggests that there is no god and humanity is cast
adrift in an uncaring cosmos, most people cannot tolerate this; they
desperately need to restore their belief in something "out there"
that is going to save them, and if there is no one to save the, that
means that someone has to be blamed for the disasters: a scapegoat.
The corrupt governments do not want to
be blamed, so they seek to blame someone else and convince the
masses that this object of derision is the chief cause of all
terrors. And the masses invariably buy into these maneuvers because,
of course, if you can find someone or something to blame for
calamity, you can continue in your illusion that,
"God is in his heaven
and - but for the evil acts of the chosen scapegoat - all
would be right with the world."
Otherwise, the tension and anxiety of
having no control (even vicarious, via prayer or ritual) over the
hostile environment, would be unbearable. I'm sure that you notice
that this also relieves the individual of any responsibility as
well, so this approach works in all kinds of situations.
We are going to examine this problem in some depth further on, but
for now, I would like the reader to become acquainted with the
facts. What I have prepared for today is The List, by no
means exhaustive, of all the incidents I have been able to uncover
of meteorite, asteroid, or cometary impacts that have caused death
and destruction, property damage, or were near misses.
Major parts of The List are
extracted from the work of John S. Lewis, Professor of
Planetary Sciences at the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory,
Codirector of the NASA/University of Arizona Space Engineering
Research Center, and Commissioner of the Arizona State Space
Commission, in specific, his books entitled
Rain of Iron and Ice and
Comet and Asteroid Impact Hazards on a
In this latter volume, he writes:
The most intensively studied impact
phenomenon, impact cratering, is of limited importance, due to
the rarity and large mean time between events for crater-forming
impacts. Almost all events causing property damage and lethality
are due to bodies less than 100 meters in diameter, almost all
of which, except for the very largest and strongest, are fated
to explode in the atmosphere. ... [W]e are forced to conclude
that the complex behavior of smaller bodies is closely relevant
to the threat actually experienced by contemporary civilization.
Based on the data he collected, Lewis
[O]n the century time scale,
firestorm ignition and direct blast damage by rare, strong,
deeply penetrating bodies are the most common threats to human
life, with average fatality rates of about 250 people per year.
... On a 1000-year scale, the most severe single event, which is
usually a 10 to 100 megaton
accounts for most of the total fatalities. On longer time
scales, regional impact-triggered tsunamis become the most
dangerous events. ...The exact impactor threshold size for
global effects remains poorly determined. [...]
Perhaps most interesting is the implication that the large
majority of lethal events (not of the number of fatalities) are
caused by bodies that are so small, so faint, and so numerous
that the cost of the effort required to find, track, predict,
and intercept them exceeds the cost of the damage incurred by
Unfortunately, Prof. Lewis did not have
to hand the information presented by Mike Baillie in his book
New Light on the Black Death, nor
did he consider the global events of 12000 years ago revealed by the
work of maverick scientists, Firestone, West and
If he had added the estimated numbers of
fatalities from those events into his calculations, it might not
have decided that the small, faint, and numerous bodies were so
easily ignored. I think that if ALL the data were plugged in, the
average deaths per year would be a lot higher than 250.
Regarding impacts from history, Lewis
writes in Comet and Asteroid Impact Hazards on a Populated Earth:
Many ancient sources from many
cultures treat comets as literal, physical harbingers of doom.
Such phenomena as the burning of cities and the overthrow of
buildings and walls by aerial events are mentioned many times in
Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and Chinese records, but there is no
evidence of physical understanding of the nature of the
bombarding objects or their effects until quite recently. [...]
There is indeed a language problem in understanding the ancient
reports, but it is largely a matter of the lack of an
appropriate technical vocabulary in the older writings. [...] In
certain locations and periods, especially in medieval Europe,
all unusual heavenly events were interpreted as signs sent by
Therefore, the surviving accounts
are strongly biased toward explaining the moral purpose of these
events, not their physical nature. Such fundamental information
as exact date and time, exact location, place of appearance of
the phenomenon in the sky, its duration and physical extent,
luminosity, precise nature of the damage done, and the like were
generally regarded as unimportant, and therefore rarely recorded
for posterity. [...]
Even in 20th century newspapers,
bolide explosions may be described (and indexed) as "mysterious
explosions," aerial blasts, aerolites, aeroliths, bolides,
earthquakes, fireballs, meteorites, meteors, shocks, thunder,
and so on. [...]
Reports of meteorite falls, often with consequent damage, extend
back to the fall of a "thunderstone" in Crete in 1478 BC,
described by Malchus in the Chronicle of Paros.
The earliest Biblical source is the account of a lethal fall of
stones in ... Joshua 10:11. [...]
Other ancient reports in the West are found in the writings of
Pausanius, Plutarch, Livy, Pindar,
Valerius Maximus, Caesar, and many others.
The report of a great fall of black
dust at Constantinople in 472 BC, perhaps the result of a
high-altitude airburst, is documented by Procopius,
Ammianus Marcellinus, Theophanes, and others.
Colonel S. P. Worden has called to my attention the
following passage in The History of the Franks, written
by Bishop Gregory of Tours:
"580 AD in Louraine, one morning
before the dawning of the day, a great light was seen
crossing the heavens, falling toward the east. A sound like
that of a tree crashing down was heard over all the
countryside, but it could surely not have been any tree,
since it was heard more than fifty miles away... the city of
Bordeaux was badly shaken by an earthquake ... a
supernatural fire burned down villages about Bordeaux.
It took hold so rapidly that
houses and even threshing-floors with all their grain were
burned to ashes. Since there was absolutely no other visible
cause of the fire, it must have happened by divine will. The
city of Orleans also burned with so great a fire that even
the rich lost almost everything."
Astronomers who have sought
documentary evidence of ancient astronomical phenomena
(eclipses, comets, fireballs, etc.) have found that East Asian
records are far superior to European records for many centuries.
Kevin Yau has searched Chinese records and found many
reports of deaths and injuries (Yau et al., 1994).
The Chinese records of lethal impact
events include the death of 10 victims from a meteorite fall in
616 AD, an "iron rain" in the O-chia district in the 14th
century that killed people and animals, several soldiers injured
by the fall of a "large star" in Ho-t'ao in 1369, and many
others. The most startling is a report of an event in early 1490
in Ch'ing-yang, Shansi, in which many people were killed when
stones "fell like rain." Of the three known surviving reports of
this event, one says that "over 10,000 people" were killed, and
one says that "several tens of thousands" were killed.
On 14 September 1511, a meteorite fall in Cremona, Lombardy,
Italy, reportedly killed a monk, several birds, and a sheep. In
the 17th century we find reports of a monk in Milano, Italy, who
was struck by a meteorite that severed his femoral artery,
causing him to bleed to death, and of two sailors killed on
shipboard by a meteorite fall in the Indian Ocean.
In addition to these shipboard fatalities, there have been
several striking accounts of near disasters involving impacts
very close to ships. Near midnight of 24 February 1885, at a
latitude of 37 degrees N and a longitude of 170 degrees 15
minutes E in the North Pacific, the crew of the barque Innerwich,
en route from Japan to Vancouver, saw the sky turn fiery red:
"A large mass of fire appeared
over the vessel, completely blinding the spectators; and, as
it fell into the sea some 50 yards to leeward, it caused a
hissing sound, which was heard above the blast, and made the
vessel quiver from stem to stem. Hardly had this
disappeared, when a lowering mass of white foam was seen
rapidly approaching the vessel.
The noise from the advancing
volume of water is described as deafening. The barque was
struck flat aback; but, before there was time to touch a
brace, the sails had filled again, and the roaring white sea
had passed ahead."
A strikingly similar event occurred
only 2 years later on the opposite side of the world. Captain
C.D. Swart of the Dutch barque J.P.A. reported in the
American Journal of Meteorology 4 (1887) that, when sailing
at 37 degrees 39 minutes N and 57degrees W, at about 5 pm on 19
March 1887, during a severe storm in which it was "as dark as
night above," two brilliant fireballs appeared as in a sea of
"fell into the water very close
alongside the vessel with a roar, and caused the sea to make
tremendous breakers which swept over the vessel. A
suffocating atmosphere and perspiration ran down every
person's face on board and caused everyone to gasp for fresh
air. Immediately after this, solid lumps of ice fell on
deck, and everything on deck and in the rigging became iced,
notwithstanding that the thermometer registered 19 degrees
On 20 August 1907, the steamship
Cambrian arrived in Boston from England with an equally
extraordinary tale to tell. When the ship was several hundred
miles south of Cape Race, Newfoundland, steaming along under a
clear sky, a brilliant fireball appeared near the northeastern
"rushed across the sky like a
rocket. The next moment it passed over the topmast of the
liner with a tremendous roar and plowed up the sea about
fifty yards from the boat. The upheaval of the water was
terrific, but the ship was not damaged."
The report of this event was carried
in the New York Times.
Next, according to the Times, on 13 September 1930, a fireball
plunged into the sea near Eureka, California, barely missing the
tug Humboldt, which was towing the Norwegian motorship Childar
out to sea. It requires little imagination to appreciate that
such an event, if it were to strike a ship, should easily cause
fatalities, or even the loss of the vessel with all hands.
Now, that just gives you a taste of what
is to come. (I would like you to notice the highlighted mention of
the fall of chunks of ice.)
So, without further ado, here is:
THE LIST - Damages, Disasters, Injuries, Deaths, and Very Close Calls
10,000 - 11,000 B.C.
- The earliest disaster we know
of from our historical or mythic records is, of course, the
legendary Deluge of Atlantis. The description of the end of
Atlantis given by Plato
in the "Timaeus" and "Critias" dialogues bears striking
resemblance to what many scientists are now agreed would be
the inevitable result of an oceanic impact by a
disintegrating comet or large asteroid.
The resultant 'tsunami', or
tidal waves, would easily reach 2000 ft. high as they
approached land, wiping out any and all coastal settlements.
The deluge traditions, of which there are literally hundreds
worldwide, appear in this light to be variations on Plato's
account, and could even be actual observation-based tales,
eye-witness accounts of the same, or similar, events.
This is very likely the event
discussed by Firestone, West and Warwick-Smith in The
Cycle of Cosmic Catastrophes: How a Stone-Age Comet Changed
the Course of World Culture.
As I have discussed in my book,
The Secret History of the World,
the North and South American continents in the Western
Hemisphere fit all the descriptions of "Atlantis," and it is
very likely that the event that led to the extinction of
about 30 species of large mammals about 12,000 years ago was
the source of the legends of Atlantis and probably the
legends of a global deluge: Noah's Flood.
Let's look at some descriptions
of what such an event can do.
Back in the 1940s Dr.
Frank C. Hibben, Prof. of Archeology at the
University of New Mexico led an expedition to Alaska to
look for human remains. He didn't find human remains; he
found miles and miles of icy muck just packed with
mammoths, mastodons, and several kinds of bison, horses,
wolves, bears and lions.
Just north of Fairbanks,
Alaska, the members of the expedition watched in horror
as bulldozers pushed the half-melted muck into sluice
boxes for the extraction of gold. Animal tusks and bones
rolled up in front of the blades "like shavings before a
giant plane". The carcasses were found in all attitudes
of death, most of them "pulled apart by some
unexplainable prehistoric catastrophic disturbance."
[Hibben, Frank, The Lost
Americans (New York: Thomas & Crowell Co. 1946)]
The killing fields stretched for literally hundreds of
miles in every direction.
There were trees and
animals, layers of peat and moss, twisted and tangled
and mangled together as though some Cosmic mixmaster
sucked them all in circa 12000 years ago, and then froze
them instantly into a solid mass.
[Sanderson, Ivan T.,
"Riddle of the Frozen Giants", Saturday Evening Post,
No. 39, January 16, 1960.]
Just north of Siberia entire islands are formed of the
bones of Pleistocene animals swept northward from the
continent into the freezing Arctic Ocean. One estimate
suggests that some ten million animals may be buried
along the rivers of northern Siberia. Thousands upon
thousands of tusks created a massive ivory trade for the
master carvers of China, all from the frozen mammoths
and mastodons of Siberia. The famous Beresovka mammoth
first drew attention to the preserving properties of
being quick-frozen when buttercups were found in its
What kind of terrible event overtook these millions of
creatures in a single day? The evidence suggests an
enormous tsunami raging across the land, tumbling
animals and vegetation together, to be finally
quick-frozen for the next 12000 years. But the
extinction was not limited to the Arctic, even if the
freezing at colder locations preserved the evidence of
Paleontologist George G. Simpson considers the
extinction of the Pleistocene horse in North America to
be one of the most mysterious episodes in zoological
history, confessing, "no one knows the answer." He is
also honest enough to admit that there is the larger
problem of the extinction of many other species in
America at the same time.
[Simpson, George G.,
Horses, New York: Oxford University Press) 1961]
The horse, giant tortoises
living in the Caribbean, the giant sloth, the
saber-toothed tiger, the glyptodont and toxodon. These
were all tropical animals. These creatures didn't die
because of the "gradual onset" of an ice age, "unless
one is willing to postulate freezing temperatures across
the equator, such an explanation clearly begs the
[Martin, P. S. & Guilday,
J. E., "Bestiary for Pleistocene Biologists",
Pleistocene Extinction, Yale University, 1967]
Massive piles of mastodon and saber-toothed tiger bones
were discovered in Florida.
[Valentine, quoted by
Berlitz, Charles, The Mystery of Atlantis (New York,
Mastodons, toxodons, giant
sloths and other animals were found in Venezuela
quick-frozen in mountain glaciers. Woolly rhinoceros,
giant armadillos, giant beavers, giant jaguars, ground
sloths, antelopes and scores of other entire species
were all totally wiped out at the same time, at the end
of the Pleistocene, approximately 12000 years ago.
This event was global. The mammoths of Siberia became
extinct at the same time as the giant rhinoceros of
Europe; the mastodons of Alaska, the bison of Siberia,
the Asian elephants and the American camels. It is
obvious that the cause of these extinctions must be
common to both hemispheres, and that it was not gradual.
A "uniformitarian glaciation" would not have caused
extinctions because the various animals would have
simply migrated to better pasture. What is seen is a
surprising event of uncontrolled violence.
[Leonard, R. Cedric,
Appendix A in "A Geological Study of the Mid-Atlantic
Ridge", Special Paper No. 1 ( Bethany: Cowen Publishing
In other words, 12000 years
ago, something terrible happened - so terrible that life
on earth was nearly wiped out in a single day.
Harold P. Lippman admits that the magnitude of
fossils and tusks encased in the Siberian permafrost
present an "insuperable difficulty" to the theory of
uniformitarianism, since no gradual process can result
in the preservation of tens of thousands of tusks and
whole individuals, "even if they died in winter."
[Lippman, Harold E.,
"Frozen Mammoths", Physical Geology, (New York 1969)]
Especially when many of
these individuals have undigested grasses and leaves in
their belly. Pleistocene geologist William R. Farrand
of the Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory, who is
opposed to catastrophism in any form, states:
"Sudden death is
indicated by the robust condition of the animals and
their full stomachs ... the animals were robust and
healthy when they died."
[Farrand, William R.,
"Frozen Mammoths and Modern Geology", Science, Vol.133,
No. 3455, March 17, 1961]
Unfortunately, in spite of
this admission, this poor guy seems to have been
incapable of facing the reality of worldwide catastrophe
represented by the millions of bones deposited all over
this planet right at the end of the Pleistocene.
Hibben sums up the situation
in a single statement:
"The Pleistocene period
ended in death. This was no ordinary extinction of a
vague geological period, which fizzled to an
uncertain end. This death was catastrophic and all
[Hibben, op. cit.]
[Quoted from The Secret History of The World]
Firestone, West and
"Until recently, the
astronomical mainstream was highly critical of Clube and
Napier's giant comet hypothesis. However, the crash of
Shoemaker-Levy 9 on
Jupiter in 1994 has led to a change in attitudes. The
comet, watched by the world's observatories, was seen
split into 20 pieces and slammed into different parts of
the planet over a period of several days. A similar
impact on Earth, it hardly needs saying, would have been
The Carolina Bays date to this
The Carolina bays are mysterious
land features often filled with bay trees and other wetland
vegetation. Because of their oval shape and consistent
orientation, they are considered by some authorities to be
the result of a vast meteor shower that occurred
approximately 12,000 years ago.
What is most astonishing is the
number of them. There are over 500,000 of these shallow
basins dotting the coastal plain from Georgia to Delaware.
That is a frightening figure.
Let me repeat: there are over 500,000 of these shallow
Unlike virtually any other
bodies of water or changes in elevation, these
topographical features follow a reliable and
unmistakable pattern. Carolina Bays are circular,
typically stretched, elliptical depressions in the
ground, oriented along their long axis from the
Northwest to the Southeast. [T]hey are further
characterized by an elevated rim of fine sand
surrounding the perimeter. [...]
Robert Kobres, an independent researcher in
Athens, Georgia, has studied Carolina Bays for nearly 20
years in conjunction with his larger interest in impact
threats from space. His recent, self-published,
investigations have profound consequences for Carolina
Bay study and demand research by academia as serious,
relevant and previously unexamined new information.
The essence of Kobres'
theory is that the search for "debris," and the
comparison of Bays with "traditional" impact craters,
falsely and naively assumes that circular craters
with extraterrestrial material in them are the only
terrestrial evidence of past encounters with objects
entering earth's atmosphere.
Kobres goes a logical step further by assuming that
forces associated with incoming bodies, principally
intense heat, should also leave visible signatures on
the earth. And, finally, that physics does not demand
that a "collision" of the bodies need necessarily occur
to produce enormous change on earth. To verify that such
encounters are possible outside of the physics lab, we
need look no further than the so-called "Tunguska
At the epicenter of the explosion lay not a large crater
with a "rock" in it, as might be expected, but nothing
more than a number of "neat oval bogs." The Tunguska
literature generally mentions the bogs only in passing,
since the researchers examining the site failed to
locate any evidence of a meteorite and went on to
examine other aspects of the explosion.
(The Secret History of
Now, how many human deaths ought
we to assign to this event? As Firestone, et al
discuss, it was global in effect and the evidence of a
sharply reduced population of not only animals, but humans,
is there in the geological record. But what was the total
human population? What kind of numbers can we plug into
Frankly, we don't know.
Undoubtedly, multiplied millions
of human beings perished at that time along with the
extinction of many animal species. One thing that seems
certain is that if these numbers were included in Lewis'
assessment, it would make a significant change in the
"average number of deaths per year". Though, of course, this
was a very big event, and those don't happen every year, or
even every century.
They happen on a scale of
thousands of years and there hasn't been one like that for
- Eco-disaster as shown in tree
rings. What evidence is there then that something unusual
happened around 3100 BC other than the Mayan year zero
supposedly relating to 3114 BC?
- Newgrange construction.
- Flood in paleoclimatic data.
- Stonehenge number one
- The unification of Egypt
- Methane peak (fires).
- Cold time according to bristlecone pines.
- The coastal menhirs in Brittany.
Although anyone of these in
itself would not be unusual, the timing of them within a
frame of only 100 years, is what makes us suspect that
something unusual was going on.
The next 1000 years or so were
very restless time globally.
The postulated bombardments
and dust-veils at around 3195 BC, another narrowest
tree-ring date, would have wreaked havoc on both the
local and global climate, and any and all cultures
affected would have taken many decades, maybe even
centuries, to recover.
The sheer terror that
'multiple-Tunguska-class fireballs' would have instilled
into the peoples of those times would have
understandably motivated them towards building some form
of observatories to help predict future meteor
showers/storms as a matter of perceived urgency.
Stonehenge may very well have
been built to help in the watch for comets. And, yet again,
we have no numbers of human fatalities to plug into the
calculations but they must have been enormous.
- 29 June - Germany - 'The
clay tablet that tells how an asteroid destroyed Sodom 5,000
A clay tablet that has
baffled scientists for more than a century has been
identified as a witness's account of an asteroid that
destroyed the Biblical cities of Sodom and Gomorrah
5,000 years ago.
Researchers believe that the tablet's symbols give a
detailed account of how a mile-long asteroid hit the
region, causing thousands of deaths and devastating more
than one million sq km (386,000 sq miles).
The impact, equivalent to more than 1,000 tons of TNT
exploding, would have created one of the world's
The Old Testament story describes how God
destroyed the 'wicked sinners' of Sodom with fire and
brimstone but allowed Lot, the city's one good man, to
flee with his family.
The theory is the work of two rocket scientists -
Alan Bond and Mark Hempsell - who have spent
the past eight years piecing together the archaeological
At its heart is a clay tablet called the Planisphere,
discovered by the Victorian archaeologist Henry
Layard in the remains of the library of the Royal
Palace at Nineveh.
Using computers to recreate the night sky thousands of
years ago, they have pinpointed the sighting described
on the tablet - a 700 BC copy of notes of the night sky
as seen by a Sumerian astrologer in one of the world's
earliest-known civilizations - to shortly before dawn on
June 29 in the year 3123BC.
Half the tablet records planet positions and clouds,
while the other half describes the movement of an object
looking like a 'stone bowl' travelling quickly across
The description matches a type of asteroid known as an
Aten type, which orbits the Sun close to the
Earth. Its trajectory would have put it on a collision
course with the Otz Valley. [In Germany; in other words.
In short, the story wasn't about Abraham and
Lot in Palestine!]
'It came in at a very
low angle - around six degrees - and then clipped a
mountain called Gaskogel around 11 km from Köfels,'
said Mr Hempsell.
'This caused it to explode - and as it travelled
down the valley it became a fireball.
'When it hit Köfels it created enormous pressures
which pulverized the rock and caused the landslide.
But because it wasn't solid, there was no crater.'
The explosion would have
created a mushroom cloud, while a plume of smoke would
have been seen for hundreds of miles.
Mr Hempsell said another part of the tablet, which is 18
cm across and shaped like a bowl, describes a plume of
smoke around dawn the following morning.
'You need to know the
context before you can translate it,' said Mr
Hempsell, of Bristol University.
Geologists have dated the
landslide to around 9,000 years ago, far earlier than
the Sumerian record. However, Mr Hempsell, who has
published a book on the theory, believes contaminated
samples from the asteroid may have confused previous
Academics were also quick to disagree with the findings,
which were published in A Sumerian Observation of the
Köfels's Impact Event.
John Taylor, a retired expert in Near Eastern
archaeology at the British Museum, said there was no
the ancient Sumerians
were able to make such accurate astronomical records,
while our knowledge of Sumerian language was incomplete.
'I remain unconvinced by
these results,' he added.
- Eco-disaster focused in the
Levant as shown in tree-rings.
The French archaeologist,
Marie-Agnes Courty, presented a paper at the
Society for Inter-Disciplinary Studies' July 1997
conference at Cambridge University, in which she first
detailed the findings of excavations at a site in
northern Syria, at Tell Leilan.
This was the first time ever
that an archaeological excavation had been initiated
where the main purpose was to examine the
stratigraphical record of the area with a view to
searching for evidence of 'scorched earth' due to a
suspected episode of extra-terrestrial 'fireball
She and her team found much evidence of microscopic
glass spherules typical of melted sand and rock
which is caused by the intense heat resulting from an
asteroid impact or air-burst. She recommended further
excavations there and at other sites.
It would make sense that
attention should be focused on sites once occupied at
dates where the tree-ring chronologies show evidence of
abrupt climate changes - as at Tell Leilan in northern
Syria, where the 'burn event' has now been dated by
Courty as immediately prior to 2345 BC, a 'narrowest
Another with no human fatality
numbers included in the calculations.
Scientists have found the
first evidence that a devastating meteor impact in the
Middle East might have triggered the mysterious collapse
of civilizations more than 4,000 years ago.
Studies of satellite images of southern Iraq have
revealed a two-mile-wide circular depression which
scientists say bears all the hallmarks of an impact
crater. If confirmed, it would point to the Middle East
being struck by a meteor with the violence equivalent to
hundreds of nuclear bombs.
Today's crater lies on what
would have been shallow sea 4,000 years ago, and any
impact would have caused devastating fires and flooding.
The catastrophic effect of these could explain the
mystery of why so many early cultures went into
sudden decline around 2300 BC.
The crater's faint outline
was found by Dr Sharad Master, a geologist at the
University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, on satellite
images of the Al 'Amarah region, about 10 miles
north-west of the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates
and home of the Marsh Arabs.
(Robert Matthews Science
Correspondent, The Telegraph - London 11-4-1)
- "The Exodus" - Biblical
scholars have been debating the date of the so-called Exodus
for hundreds of years. The most recent researches have
indicated that there was no exodus as depicted in the Bible,
it was all made up by post-exilic priests - to create a
"history" justifying their elite status and privileges. More
than that, based on historical knowledge of how things were
done in those times, they probably were not even related to
any of the people "carried away to Babylon" in the first
And so, it seems logical to
speculate that the background information contained in the
Exodus story - and other related stories in the Bible, such
as the collapse of Jericho and the destruction of Sodom and
Gomorrah - were legendary stories of events that occurred
around the time of the eruption of Thera which has been
fairly securely fixed around 1600 B.C. plus or minus 50
Mike Baillie reports that
whatever happened at this period of history that includes
this monstrous eruption, it was global in effect as is shown
in the tree-ring chronologies. In other words, more was
going on than just a volcanic eruption.
Again, no numbers of fatalities
to plug into the calculations though there are many ancient
reports of plague and mass death and Egyptian records report
many strange sky, weather, and plague phenomena.
- Collapse of Shang and Mycenean
cultures. Collapse of the Bronze Age in the Mediterranean
Wikipedia tells us:
The Bronze Age collapse is
the name given by those historians who see the
transition from the Late Bronze Age to the Early Iron
Age, as violent, sudden and culturally disruptive,
expressed by the collapse of palace economies of the
Aegean and Anatolia, replaced after a hiatus by the
isolated village cultures of the Dark Age period of
history of the Ancient Middle East.
Mike Baillie points out
that a series of impacts/overhead explosions, would more
adequately explain the longstanding problem of the end of
the Bronze Age in the Eastern Mediterranean in the 12th
century BC. At that time, many - uncountable - major sites
were destroyed and totally burned and it has all been blamed
on those supernatural "Sea Peoples."
If that was the case, if it was
invasion and conquest, there ought to at least be some
evidence for that, like dead warriors or signs of warfare...
but for the most part, that is not the case. There were
almost no bodies found, and no precious objects except those
that were hidden away as though someone expected to return
for them, or didn't have time to retrieve them.
The people who fled
(extra-terrestrial events often have precursor activities
and warnings because a comet can often be observed
approaching for some time) were probably also killed in the
act of fleeing and the result was total abandonment and
total destruction of the cities in question.
John Lewis did not include this in his calculations
Scientists Say Comet Smashed Into
Southern Germany In 200 BC
A comet or asteroid smashed
into modern-day Germany some 2,200 years ago, unleashing
energy equivalent to thousands of atomic bombs,
scientists reported on Friday.
The 1.1-kilometre (0.7-mile) diameter rock whacked into
southeastern Bavaria, leaving an "exceptional field" of
meteorites and impact craters that stretch from the town
of Altoetting to an area around Lake Chiemsee, the
scientists said in an article in the latest issue of US
Colliding with the Earth's atmosphere at more than
43,000 kms per hour, the space rock probably broke up at
an altitude of 70 kms), they believe.
The biggest chunk smashed into the ground with a force
equivalent to 106 million tonnes of TNT, or 8,500
"The forest beneath the
blast would have ignited suddenly, burning until the
impact's blast wave shut down the conflagration,"
the investigators said.
"Dust may have been blown into the stratosphere,
where it would have been transported around the
globe easily... The region must have been devastated
The biggest crater is now a
circular lake called Tuettensee, measuring 370 meters
(1,200 feet) across. Scores of smaller craters and other
meteorite impacts can be spotted in an elliptical field,
inflicted by other debris.
The study was carried out by
the Chiemgau Impact Research Team, whose five
members included a mineralogist, a geologist and an
Additional evidence comes from local discoveries of
Celtic artifacts, which appear to have been scorched on
That helped to establish an approximate date for the
impact of between 480 and 30 BC.
The figure may be fine-tuned to around 200 BC, thanks to
tree-ring evidence from preserved Irish oaks, which show
a slowing in growth around 207 BC.
This may have been caused by a veil of dust kicked up
the impact, which filtered out sunlight.
In addition, Roman authors at about the same time wrote
about showers of stones falling from the skies and
terrifying the populace.
The object is more likely to have been a comet than an
asteroid, given the length of the ellipse and scattered
debris, the report says.
- Pliny states that there
were "Portentous and protracted eclipses of the sun occur,
such as the one after the murder of Caesar the dictator...."
Yet there were no solar eclipses
visible from anywhere in the Roman Empire from Feb. of 48
B.C. through Dec. of 41 B.C., inclusive. There was a
spectacular daylight comet in 44 B.C., perhaps the most
famous comet in antiquity. A dust veil occluded the sky over
Italy in the spring of 44, and has often been attributed to
an (unconfirmed) eruption of Mt Etna.
There are sulfate deposits in
the Greenland ice cores for this year and there is tree ring
evidence from North America, where dendrochronology points
to a climatic change in the late 40's B.C. What hit and
where it hit, has yet to be determined, and whether or not
there was death and destruction somewhere on the globe, is
John S. Lewis does not include this event in his
60 - 70 A.D.
- The destruction of Jerusalem.
The story Josephus tells of
the sixties is one of famine, social unrest,
institutional deterioration, bitter internal conflicts,
class warfare, banditry, insurrections, intrigues,
betrayals, bloodshed, and the scattering of Judeans
throughout Palestine. ... There were wars, rumors of
wars for the better part of ten years and Josephus
reports portents, including a brilliant daylight in the
middle of the night!
(Burton Mack, A Myth of
Innocence: Mark and Christian Origins, 1988, 2006)
We recognize that brilliant
daylight at night from
the Tunguska event.
Josephus gives several portents of the evil to befall
Jerusalem and the temple. He described a star resembling a
sword, a comet, a light shining in the temple, a cow giving
birth to a lamb at the moment it was to be sacrificed in the
Jerusalem Temple, armies fighting in the sky, and a voice
from the Holy of Holies declaring,
"We are departing"
(Josephus, Jewish Wars,
6). (Obviously, the voice was apocryphal.)
Some of these portents are
mentioned by other contemporary historians, Tacitus
for example. However, Tacitus, in book five of his
Histories, castigated the superstitious Jews for not
recognizing and offering expiations for the portents to
avert the disasters.
He put the destruction of
Jerusalem down to the stupidity or willful ignorance of the
Jews themselves in not offering the appropriate sacrifices.
Thus there was a star
resembling a sword, which stood over the city
[Jerusalem], and a comet, that continued a whole year...
(Josephus, Jewish Wars
In short, it very well may be
that the eschatological writings in the New Testament,
the very formation of the Myth of Jesus, was based on
cometary events of the time, including a memory of the "Star
in the East."
The destruction of the Temple at
Jerusalem may very well have been an "act of God," as
reported by Mark in his Gospel.
- Italy - A team of geologists
believes it has found the incoming space rock's impact
crater, and dating suggests its formation coincided with the
celestial vision said to have converted a future Roman
emperor to Christianity. The small, circular Cratere del
Sirente in central Italy is clearly an impact crater,
said the geologists because its shape fits and it is also
surrounded by numerous smaller, secondary craters, gouged
out by ejected debris, as expected from impact models.
Radiocarbon dating puts the crater's formation at about the
right time to have been witnessed by Constantine and there
are magnetic anomalies detected around the secondary craters
- possibly due to magnetic fragments from the meteorite. It
would have struck the Earth with the force of a small
nuclear bomb, perhaps a kiloton in yield.
It would have looked like a
nuclear blast, with a mushroom cloud and shockwaves.
- I-hsi and Chin-ling, China -
"Thundering chariots" "like granite" fell to ground;
vegetation was scorched.
- Great Antioch earthquake,
...those caught in the earth
beneath the buildings were incinerated and sparks of
fire appeared out of the air and burned everyone they
struck like lightning. The surface of the earth boiled
and foundations of buildings were struck by thunderbolts
thrown up by the earthquakes and were burned to ashes by
fire... it was a tremendous and incredible marvel with
fire belching out rain, rain falling from tremendous
furnaces, flames dissolving into showers ... as a result
Antioch became desolate ... in this terror up to 250,000
(John Malalas quoted by
Jeffreys, E., Jeffreys, M. and Scott, R. 1986, "The
Chronicle of John Malalas", Byzantina Australiensia,
Australian Assoc. Byzantine Studies 4, Melbourne.)
536 - 545 A.D.
- Reduced sunlight, mists or
"dry fogs, crop failures, famines in China and the
Mediterranean, and plagues."
The Praetorian Prefect Magnus Aurelius Cassiodorus
Senator wrote a letter documenting the conditions.
All of us are observing, as
it were, a blue colored sun; we marvel at bodies which
cast no mid-day shadow, and at that strength of
intensest heat reaching extreme and dull tepidity ... So
we have had a winter without storms, spring without
mildness, summer without heat ... The seasons have
changed by failing to change; and what used to be
achieved by mingled rains cannot be gained from dryness
Procopius of Caesarea, a
And it came about during
this year that a most dread portent took place. For the
sun gave forth its light without brightness, like the
moon, during the whole year, and it seemed exceedingly
like the sun in eclipse, for the beams it shed were not
clear nor such as it is accustomed to shed.
John of Ephesus, cleric
and a historian, wrote:
The sun was dark and its
darkness lasted for eighteen months; each day it shone
for about four hours; and still this light was only a
feeble shadow ... the fruits did not ripen and the wine
tasted like sour grapes.
In the wake of this inexplicable
darkness, crops failed and famine struck. And then,
pestilence. But here we mean "pestilence" as Jacme
d'Agramaont, a doctor writing in 1348 described it in
reference to the "Black Death".
... Agramont said nothing
concerning the term epidemia, but he extensively
developed what he meant by pestilencia. He gave
this latter term a very peculiar etymology, in
accordance with a from of knowledge established by
Isidore of Seville (570=636) in his Etymologiae,
which came to be widely accepted throughout Europe
during the Middle Ages.
He split the term
pestilencia up into three syllables, each having a
particular meaning: pes = tempesta: 'storm, tempest'; te
= 'temps, time', lencia = clardat: 'brightness, light';
hence, he concluded, the pestilencia was 'the
time of tempest caused by light from the stars.'
[Jon Arrizabalaga, see
During the time of Justinian,
this "pestilence" ravaged Europe, reducing the population of
the Roman empire by a third, killing four-fifths of the
citizens of Constantinople, reaching as far East as China
and as far Northwest as Great Britain.
John of Ephesus documented the
progress of this "pestilence" in AD 541-542 in
Constantinople, where city officials gave up trying to count
the dead after two hundred thirty thousand:
The city stank with corpses
as there were neither litters nor diggers, and corpses
were heaped up in the streets ... It might happen that
[a person] went out to market to buy necessities and
while he was standing and talking or counting his
change, suddenly the end would overcome the buyer here
and the seller there, the merchandise remaining in the
middle with the payment for it, without there being
either buyer or seller to pick it up.
This was also the time assigned
to the legendary King Arthur, the loss of the Grail,
and the manifestation of the Wasteland. Although
scholars place the historical King Arthur in the fifth
century, the date of his death is given as AD 539.
According to Mike Baillie,
the imagery from the Arthurian legend is in accordance with
the appearance of a comet and subsequent famine and plague:
the "Waste Land" of legend. Ireland's St. Patrick stories
feature a wasteland as well. And although St. Patrick is
credited with ridding Ireland of snakes, we might consider
that there never were snakes in Ireland, and that snakes and
dragons are images associated with comets.
Until that point in time, the Britons had held control of
post-Roman Britain, keeping the Anglo-Saxons isolated and
suppressed. After the Romans were gone, the Britons
maintained the status quo, living in towns, with elected
officials, and carrying on trade with the empire. After AD
536, the year reported as the "death of Arthur", the
Britons, the ancient Cymric empire that at one time had
stretched from Cornwall in the south to Strathclyde in the
north, all but disappeared, and were replaced by
There is much debate among
scholars as to whether the Anglo-Saxons killed all of the
Britons, or assimilated them.
Here we must consider that they
were victims of possibly many overhead cometary
explosions which wiped out most of the population of
Europe, plunging it into the Dark Ages which were,
apparently, really DARK, atmospherically speaking.
Flag of Wales
The mystery of the origins
of the red dragon symbol, now on the flag of
Wales, has perplexed many historians, writers and
romanticists, and the archeological community generally
has refrained from commenting on this most unusual
emblem, claiming it does not concern them.
In the ancient Welsh
language it is known as 'Draig Goch' - 'red dragon', and
in "Y Geiriadur Cymraeg Prifysgol Cymru", the
"University of Wales Welsh Dictionary", (Cardiff,
University of Wales Press, 1967, p. 1082) there are
translations for the various uses of the Welsh word 'draig'.
Amongst them are common uses
of the word, which is today taken just to mean a
'dragon', but in times past it has also been used to
refer to 'Mellt Distaw' - (sheet lightning), and also 'Mellt
Didaranau' - (lightning unaccompanied by thunder).
But the most interesting common usage of the word in
earlier times, according to this authoritative
dictionary, is 'Maen Mellt' the word used to refer to a
'meteorite'. And this makes sense, as the Welsh word 'maen'
translates as 'stone', while the Welsh word 'mellt'
translates as 'lightning' - so literally a
That the ancient language of
the Welsh druids has words still in use today which have
in the past been used to describe both a dragon and also
a meteorite, is something that greatly helps us to
follow the destructive 'trail of the dragon' as it was
described in early Welsh 'riddle-poems'. [...]
The exact nature and sequence of events in the mid-6th.
century A.D. that gave rise to the period we refer to as
the European 'Dark Age' is still a matter for
speculation amongst historians and archeologists. Over
the past 20 years or so, certain paleo-climatologists
have begun comparing notes with archeologists and
astronomers, and interestingly, in the absence of
written records, many have begun to look a little more
closely at mythology in their efforts to corroborate the
findings of their researches.
While much of this recent
bout of inter-disciplinary brainstorming has focused on
the 6th.C. AD start of the European Dark Age, earlier
dates are also of great interest to those embroiled in
this veritable 'paradigm shift'.[...]
In recent years certain astronomers have increasingly
come to appreciate that encoded in the folklore and
mythologies of many cultures are the accurate
observations of ancient skywatchers. Almost all tell of
times when death and mass destruction came from the
skies, events that are often portrayed as 'celestial
battles' between what they variously depicted as 'the
And curiously the imagery in
these 'myths' have many common features, even between
the mythologies of cultures widely spaced in time and
[The European 'Dark Age'
And Welsh Oral Tradition]
Out on the Asian steppes,
whatever happened in AD 536 caused political upheaval. The
horse-based economy of the warlike Avars foundered, and
their vassals, the cattle-herding Turks, overthrew them.
Driven from the steppes, the Avars joined forces with the
Slavs in Hungary on the borders of the Roman empire.
Gildas, who was writing at approximately 540 AD, says
that the island of Britain was on fire from sea to sea,
" ... until it had burned
almost the whole surface of the island and was licking
the western ocean with its fierce red tongue." .
In "The Life of St. Teilo"
contained in the Llandaf Charters, of St. Teilo, who
had recently been made Bishop of Llandaf Cathedral in
Morganwg, South Wales, it says:
" ... however he could not
long remain, on account of the pestilence which nearly
destroyed the whole nation. It was called the Yellow
Pestilence, because it occasioned all persons who were
seized by it to be yellow and without blood, and it
appeared to men a column of a watery cloud, having one
end trailing along the ground, and the other above,
proceeding in the air, and passing through the whole
country like a shower going through the bottom of
Whatever living creatures it
touched with its pestiferous blast, either immediately
died, or sickened for death ... and so greatly did the
aforesaid destruction rage throughout the nation, that
it caused the country to be nearly deserted".
St. Teilo is recorded as having
left South Wales for Brittany to escape the Yellow
Pestilence, and that it lasted for some 11 years.
- In Yemen, the Great Dam of
Marib, dating from around the seventh century B.C., one
of the engineering wonders of the ancient world and a
central part of the south Arabian civilization, broke and
began to collapse. By 550 AD, the dam was a complete loss
and thousands of people migrated to another oasis on the
Arabian peninsula, Medina. The Arab tribes, traumatized by
the environmental disasters around them, began to think of
conquest for the sake of survival.
In 610 AD, a new leader unified
Although a great many historical changes happened in the
seventh century, such as the Roman war with Persia, the rise
of Islam, rebellion and civil war in the Roman empire, and
the advance of the Slavs driven by the Avars, it can be said
that the seeds of these changes, the destruction of the old
that made way for the new, can be traced to the
environmental catastrophe of 536 AD.
John Lewis does not include any estimates of the
death and destruction occurring at that time in his "average
number of annual deaths by comets."
- France - Great fireball and blast; Orleans and nearby towns
- June 25 - China - "Red-colored object" fell with "noise like
thunder" into furnace; exploded; burned several houses
- Jan. 14 - China - Ten deaths reported in China from meteorite
shower; siege towers destroyed
- Coldingham, England - Monastery destroyed by "fire from
heaven" as reported in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.
- Nara, Japan - Meteorite strikes house.
- Upper Saxony - Charlemagne's horse startled by meteor; throws
him to the ground.
- Chang-chou, China - Daytime fireball, meteorite fall; fences
- 18 June on the Julian
calendar, 25 June, Gregorian
In this year, on the Sunday
before the Feast of St. John the Baptist, after sunset
when the moon had first become visible a marvelous
phenomenon was witnessed by some five or more men who
were sitting there facing the moon. Now there was a
bright new moon, and as usual in that phase its horns
were tilted toward the east; and suddenly the upper horn
split in two.
From the midpoint of the
divisin a flaming torch sprang up, spewing out, over a
considerable distance, fire, hot coals, and sparks.
Meanwhile the body of the moon which was below writhed,
as it were, in anxiety, and, to put it in the words of
those who reported it to me and saw it with their own
eyes, the moon throbbed like a wounded snake. Afterwards
it resumed its proper state.
This phenomenon was repeated
a dozen times or more, the flame assuming various
twisting shapes at random and then returning to normal.
Then after these transformations the moon from horn to
horn, that is along its whole lengthe, took on a
The present writer was given
this report by men who saw it with their own eyes, and
are prepared to stake ther honour on an oath that they
have made no addition or falsification in the above
(Gervase of Canterbury)
- O-chia district, China - Iron rain kills people, animals,
1347 - 1348
- Black Death - The Black Death - not included in John Lewis'
calculations - killed about half the population of Western
Europe. The effects of this event were possibly global though
the number of deaths worldwide is unknown.
1348 - 25
Jan. - Earthquake in Carinthia, 16 cities destroyed, fire fell
from heaven; over 40,000 dead. John Lewis does not include this
event in his calculations.
- Ho-t'ao, China - "Large star" fell, starts fire, soldiers
- 3 Feb. - Ch'ing-yang, Shansi, China - Stones fell like rain;
more than 10,000 killed.
- Ensisheim, Alsace - 280-pound meteorite landed; in the same
year Columbus reported "a marvelous branch of fire" that fell
into the sea as he crossed the Atlantic.
- 14 Sept. - Cremona, Lombardy, Italy - Monk killed with several
birds, a sheep.
- May - Nantan, China -
"During summertime in May of
Jiajing 11th year, stars fell from the northwest
direction, five to six fold long, waving like snakes and
dragons. They were as bright as lightning and
disappeared in seconds".
Many of them were recovered by
local farmers in 1958 when China needed steel for the "Great
Leap Forward" advocated by Mao Zedong.
They have coarse octahedral
structure and contain 92.35% iron & 6.96% nickel, belonging
to IIICD classification of Wasson et al (1980)'s. Most
Nantan meteorites weight 150 to 1500 kg. Due to the
humid condition, smaller pieces buried in soils of lower
valleys have been extensively weathered and oxidized into
- Punjab, India - Hot iron fell, burned grass; made into dagger
knife, two sabres.
- Fall of Magedeburg, Germany
[A] grand storm-wind picked
up, the town was inflamed at all possible places, so
that even little aid (rescue) was of help (appreciated).
... then I saw the whole town of Magdeburg, except dome,
monastery and New Market, lying in embers and ashes,
which raged only about 3 or 3 1/2 hours, from which I
deduced God's strange omnipotence and punishment.
(Geoffrey Mortimer, German Life and Letters 54:2, "Style
and Fictionalization in Eyewitness Personal Accounts of
the Thirty Years War")
A "second sun" was seen on and
around May 29, 1630, and on May 20, 1631, one year later,
Magdeburg fell as described above. The standard historical
description of the Fall of Magdeburg goes pretty much as
The fall of Magdeburg
horrified Europe. The city had been starved and then was
bombarded unmercifully. The artillery shelling grew so
bad, the town caught on fire. Over 20,000 of the
citizens perished in the siege and the cataclysm that
ended it. The city itself was burned to the ground.
The cruel and pointless
devastation marked a new low, an act abhorred by a
generation well accustomed to horrors.
- China - Large stone fell in market; tens killed; tens of
- Ship near Malacca - Two sailors reported killed on board ship
en route from Japan to Sicily.
- Milano, Italy - Monk reported killed by meteorite.
- 9 August - China - Meteorite smashes through roof; no
- 7 Nov. - China - Meteorite fall, breaks roof beam of house
- Chamblan, France - House struck and burned by meteorite.
- 24 July - Barbotan and Agen, Gascony, France - Meteorite
crushes cottage, kills farmer and some cattle.
- 16 June - Siena, Italy - Child's hat hit; child uninjured
- 19 Dec. - Benares, India - Building struck by meteorite
- 30 Oct. - Suffolk, England - "Dwelling-house of Mr. Woodrosse,
miller, near Horringer-mill, Suffolk, was set on fire by a
meteor, and entirely consumed, together with a stable
4 July - E. Norton, England - White Bull public house struck,
chimney knocked down, grass burned, flight of object nearly
- 13 Dec - Massing, Czech. - Building struck by meteorite.
- July - Shahabad, India - Great stone fell five villages
burned; several killed.
- 10 Nov. - Waseda, Japan - Meteorite strikes house.
- 16 Jan. - Oriang, India - Man reported killed, woman injured
by meteorite fall.
- 27 Feb. - Mhow, India - Man struck on arm, tree broken by
- 13 Nov. - Belley, Dept. de l'Ain, France - Fireball sets fire
- 11 Dec. Macaé, Brazil - Several homes damaged, several oxen
killed by meteorite.
- Chiloe Archipel, Chile - Fire caused by meteorite fall.
- 6 May - Ch'ang-shou, Szechwan, China - Stone meteorite damages
more than 100 tombs.
- 14 July - Braunau, Bohemia - A 37-lb iron smashes through roof
- 17 Oct. - Szu-mao, China - Meteorite falls through roof of
- 9 Dec. Ausson, France - Building hit by meteorite.
- 1 May - New Concord, Ohio - Colt struck and killed by
- 8 Aug. - Pillistfer, Estonia - Building struck.
- 1 Jan - Hessle, Sweden - Man missed by few meters.
- 23 Jan. - Nedagolla, India - Man stunned by meteorite. (Don't
know if this means the man was "amazed" or if he was hit and
physically knocked senseless.)
- 8 Oct. - Great Chicago Fire.
See Comet Biela and Mrs.
O'Leary's Cow (Another item that John Lewis has not entered into
ruins, as seen from the corner of Dearborn and Monroe Streets,
- Banbury, England - Fireball fells trees, wall
- 30 June - Chin-kuei Shan, Ming-tung Li, China - Thunderstorm;
huge stone fell, crushed cottage, killed child.
- 16 Feb - Judesegeri, India - Water tank struck by meteorite.
- 3 Jan. - Warrenton, Missouri - Man missed by few meters.
- 21 Jan. - De Cewsville, Ontario - Man missed by few meters.
- 14 Jan. - Newtown, Indiana - Leonidas Grover reported killed
in bed by meteorite. (possible hoax in Paducah Daily News).
- 31 Jan. - Dun-le-Poelier, France - Farmer reported killed by
- 12 Nov. - Huan-hsiang, China - Rain of stones; many houses
damaged; sulfur smell.
- 19 Nov. Grosliebenthal, Russia - Man reported injured by
- 19 March - Barque J.P.A., N. Atlantic - Fireball "fell into
water very close alongside".
- 22 Nov. - Zabrodii, Russia - Building struck by meteorite.
- 11 Mar - New Martinsville, West Virginia - A man was
reportedly struck, a horse killed, and walls pierced.
- 4 Nov. - Diep River, S. Africa - Building struck
- 5 Sept - Hsin-p'ai Wei, Weng-Li - Stone fell; whole family
crushed to death
- 7 Dec. - Bellefontaine, Ohio - Meteorite starts fire, destroys
- 30 June - Tunguska valley, Siberia - Two reportedly killed,
many injured by
- 29 May - Shepard, Texas - Meteor drops through house.
- 27 April - Mexico - Giant meteor bursts, falls in mountains,
starts forest fire.
- 16 June - Kilbourn, Wisconsin - Meteorite struck barn
- 28 June - Nakhla, Egypt - Dog struck and killed by meteorite
- 19 July - Holbrook, Arizona - Building struck; 14,000 stones
fell; man missed by a few meters
- 9 Jan. - W. France - Meteor explosions break windows
- 22 Nov - Batavia, New York - Meteorites damage farm
- 18 Jan. - Baxter, Missouri - Building struck
- 3 Dec - Strathmore, Scotland - Building struck
- 30 June - Richardton, N. Dakota - Building struck
- 15 July - Berkshire Hills, Mass. - Meteor starts fire in
- 21 Dec. - Beirut, Syria - Building hit
- 2 Feb. - Baldwyn, Mississippi - Man missed by 3 meters
- 24 April - Barnegat, New Jersey - Rocked buildings, shattered
windows, clouds of noxious gas - overhead explosion of comet
- 30 May - Nagai, Japan - Person missed by several meters
- 6 July - Johnstown, Colorado - Man missed being hit by 1 meter
- 28 April - Aba, Japan - Girl struck and injured by "dubious"
- 8 Dec. Zvezvan, Yugoslavia - Meteor hits bridal party, kills 1
- 13 Aug. - Brazil - The "Rio
Brazlilian "Tunguska event";
fire and "depopulation" - "An ear-piercing "whistling"
sound, which might be understood as being a manifestation of
the electrophonic phenomena which have been discussed in WGN
over the past few years; the sun appearing to be "blood-red"
before the explosion.
The event occurred at about 8h
local time, so that the bolide probably came from the
sunward side of the earth. If the object were spawning dust
and meteoroids - that is, it was cometary in nature - then,
since low-inclination, eccentric orbits produce radiants
close to the sun, it might be that the solar coloration
(which, in this explanation, would have been witnessed
elsewhere) was due to such dust in the line of sight to the
sun. In short, the earth was within the tail of the small
There was a fall of fine ash
prior to the explosion, which covered the surrounding
vegetation with a blanket of white.
- 10 July - Malinta, Ohio - Blast, crater, smell of sulfur,
windows broken in farmhouse; four telephone poles snapped, wires
down; overhead cometary fragment explosion
- 8 Sept. - Hagerstown, Maryland - Meteor crashes through roof
- 4 Aug. - Sao Christovao, Brazil - Fall destroys warehouse roof
- 10 Aug - Archie, Missouri - Homestead struck, person missed by
less than 1 meter
- 24 Feb. - Stratford, Texas - Bright fireball, 4-lb metallic
mass falls, grass burned
- 8 Aug. - Sioux Co., Nebraska - Man missed by a few meters.
- 16 Feb. - Texas - Pilot swerves to avoid crash with fireball
- 18 Feb - Seville, Spain - House struck, burned.
- 28 Sept. - California - Pilot escapes fireball shower (one
assumes this means he performed evasive maneuvers)
- 11 Aug. - Briggsdale, Colorado - Man narrowly missed by
- 11 Dec. - 21h local time -
British Guyana - Lat: 2 deg 10min North, Long: 59 deg 10 min
West, close to Marudi Mountain.
A report from Serge A. Korff of
the Bartol Research Foundation, Franklin Institute
(Delaware, USA) suggested that the region of devastation
might be greater than that involved in the Tunguska event
itself. Eye-witness accounts were in accord with a large
meteoroid/small asteroid entry, with a body passing overhead
accompanied by a terrific roar (presumably electrophonic
effects), later concussions, and the sky being lit up like
A local aircraft operator, Art
Williams, reported seeing an area of forest more than twenty
miles (32 kilometers) in extent which had been destroyed,
and he later stated that the shattered jungle was elongated
rather than circular, as occurred at Tunguska and would be
expected from the air blast caused by an object entering
away from the vertical (the most likely entry angle for all
cosmic projectiles is 45 degrees).
- 14 Mar. - Red Bank, New Jersey - Meteorite through shed roof
- 2 Apr. -Yurtuk, USSR - Building struck
- 19 Oct. - Newfoundland - Fisherman's boat set on fire by
- 31 Mar. - Kasamatsu, Japan - Meteorite pierces roof of ship
- 16 Jun. - Pantar, Phillipines - Several buildings struck
- 24 Jun. - Chicora, Pennsylvania - A cow struck and injured
- 29 Sep. - Benld, Illinois - Garage and car struck by 4-lb
- 10 Jul. - Black Moshannon Park, Pennsylvania - Person missed by
- 6 Apr. - Pollen, Norway - Person missed by 1 m
- Qatar - A crater, believed to
have been created by the impact of a falling meteor, found
near Dukhan. Sheikh Salman bin Jabor al-Thani, head of the
astronomical department at Qatar Scientific Club, said
yesterday the club believed that the meteor had hit Qatar in
The club started a search for
evidence three years ago because of stories of a "falling
star" told by people of that era. The club took the help of
Google Earth in the search. They succeeded in locating five
craters, which were just visible on the surface.
- 16 May -Santa Ana, Nuevo Leon - Meteorite destroys many
houses, injures 28
- 30 Nov. - Colford, Gloucestershire, UK - Telephones knocked
out, boy knocked off bicycle
- 12 Feb. - Sikhote Alin,
Vladivostok - An iron meteorite that broke up only about 5
miles above the earth rained iron. It produced over 100
craters with the largest being around 85 feet in diameter.
The strewn field covered an area of about 1 mile by a half
mile. There were no fires or similar destruction like that
found at Tunguska.
Shredded trees and broken
branches mostly. A total of 23 tons of meteorites were
recovered and it's been estimated it's total mass was around
70 tons when it broke up.
- 21 Sep. - Beddgelert, Wales - Building struck
- 20 Nov. -Kochi, Japan - Hot meteoritic stone enters house
- 23 May. - Madhipura, India - Building struck
- 20 Sept. -Murray, Kentucky - Several buildings struck
- 10 Dec. - St. Louis, Missouri - Car struck
- 03 Mar. -Pecklesheim, FRG - Person missed by several meters
- 07 Jan. -Dieppe, France - Meteorite-building explosion,
- 28 Nov. -Sylacauga, Alabama - Mrs. Annie Hodges struck by 4-kg
meteorite that crashed through roof, destroyed radio
- 17 Jan. -Kirkland, Washington - Two irons break through
amateur astronomer's observatory dome; one sets a fire.
- one of the few documented case of a person being hit by a
meteorite occurred. (Source - need more details)
- 29 Feb. -Centerville, S. Dakota - Building hit
- 13 Oct. -Hamlet, Indiana - Building hit
- 23 Feb. -Ras Tanura, Saudi Arabia - Loading dock struck
- 6 Sept. -Bells, Texas - Meteorite strikes rook of house
- 26 Apr. -Kiel, FRG - Building hit
- Massachusetts - meteorite fell (need more details on this
- 24 Dec. - Barwell, England - Two buildings struck and a car
- 11 Jul. -Denver, Colorado - Building struck
- 12 Apr. -Schenectady, New York - House hit
- 25 Apr. -Bovedy, N. Ireland - Building hit
- 7 Aug. -Andreevka, USSR - Building hit
- 16 Sept. -Suchy Dul, Czechoslovakia - Building hit
- 28 Sept. -Murchison, Australia - Building hit
- 8 Apr. -Wethersfield, Connecticut - House struck by meteorite
- 2 Aug. -Havero, Finland - Building hit
- 15 Mar. -San Juan Capistrano, California - Building hit
- 27 Oct. -Canon City, Colorado - Building hit
- 18 Aug. -Naragh, Iran - Building hit
- 31 Jan. -Louisville, Kentucky - Three buildings and a car
- 7 Jun. -Cilimus, Indonesia - Meteorite fell in garden
- 22 Sept. - The Vela Incident
(sometimes known as the South Atlantic Flash) - The flash
was detected on 22 September 1979, at 00:53 GMT, by a US
Vela satellite that was specifically developed to detect
nuclear explosions. The satellite reported the
characteristic double flash (a very fast and very bright
flash, then a longer and less-bright one) of an atmospheric
nuclear explosion of two to three kilotons, in the Indian
Ocean between Bouvet Island and the Prince Edward Islands at
47° S 40° E.
Hydrophones operated by the U.S.
Navy detected a signal which was consistent with a small
nuclear explosion on or slightly under the surface of the
water near the Prince Edward Islands.
The radio telescope at Arecibo,
Puerto Rico, also detected an anomalous traveling ionospheric disturbance at the same time.
"There remains uncertainty
about whether the South Atlantic flash in September 1979
recorded by optical sensors on the U.S. Vela satellite
was a nuclear detonation and, if so, to whom it
- 13 Jun. -Salem, Oregon - Building hit
- 8 Nov. -Wethersfield, Connecticut - Pierced roof of house
- 15 Jun. - Nantong, PRC - Man missed by 7 m
- 30 Jun. -Aomori, Japan - Building struck
- 22 Aug. -Tomiya, Japan - Two buildings hit
- 30 Sept. - Binnigup, Australia - Two sunbathers missed by 5 m
- 5 Dec. -Cuneo, Italy - Strong explosion, building flash;
windows broken; daytime fireball "bright as Sun"
- 10 Dec. -Claxton, Georgia - Mailbox destroyed by meteorite
- 6 Jan. -La Criolla, Argentina - Farmhouse roof pierced, door
smashed; 9.5-kg stone misses woman by 2 m
- 26 June - Hartford, Conn. - a 1,500-pound slab of ice, six
feet long and eight inches thick flattened a picket fence. The
ground shook with the impact. A 13-year-old boy and his friend
were standing 10 feet away.
- 29 Jul. -Kokubunji, Japan - Several buildings hit
- 1 Mar. -Trebbin, GDR - Greenhouse struck by meteorite
- 18 May -Torino, Italy - Building struck
- 12 Jun. -Opotiki, New Zealand - Building hit
- 15 Aug. -Sixiangkou, PRC - Building hit
- 7 Apr. -Enschede, Netherlands - House hit by believed fragment
- 2 Jul. -Masvingo, Zimbabwe - Person missed by 5 m
- Tahara, Japan - Meteorite struck deck of car-transport ship;
- 31 Aug. -Noblesville, Indiana - Meteorite fall missed two boys
by 3.5 m
- 14 Aug. -Mbale, Uganda - Forty-eight stones fall; roofs
damaged, boy struck on head
- 9 Oct. -Peerskill, New York - Car trunk, floor pierced by
- 18 Jan. - Cando, Spain - an
explosion that occurred in the village of Cando, Spain, in
the morning of January 18, 1994. There were no casualties in
this incident, which has been described as being like a
small Tunguska event. Witnesses claim to have seen a
fireball in the sky lasting for almost one minute.
A possible explosion site was
established when a local resident called the University of
Santiago de Compostela to report an unknown gouge in a
hillside close to the village. Up to 200 m³ of terrain was
missing and trees were found displaced 100 m down the hill.
- 16 July - Fragments of
Comet Shoemaker-Levy begin impacting
- 20 Oct. -Coleman, Michigan - Meteorite penetrated roof of
- Neagari, Japan - Meteorite penetrated car trunk
- 26 Nov. - Honduras - According to the Associated Press:
meteorite slammed into a sparsely populated area of Honduras
last month, terrifying residents and leaving a 165-foot-wide
crater, scientists confirmed Sunday. Near San Luis, in the
western province of Santa Barbara."
- 11 Apr. -Chambrey, France - Meteorite penetrated roof of car;
- 13 Jun. -Portales, New Mexico - Meteorite penetrated barn roof
- 12 Jul. -Kitchener, Ontario - Meteorite falls 1 m from golfer
- January - Canada - a 150-tonne meteoroid lit the skies over
Whitehorse, and exploded over a lake about 100 kilometers south
of the city. The Tagish Lake meteor produced a treasure of
information about a rare kind of meteorite.
image of the trail of the Tagish Lake meteorite found on a
Candian web site
fall and collection of the Tagish Lake meteorite in Western
Canada, British Columbia
- January - Iberian peninsula -
ice chunks weighing up to 6.6 pounds rained on Spain for 10
days causing extensive damage to cars and an industrial
storage facility. At first, scientists thought the
phenomenon was unique to Spain. During the past three years,
however, they've accumulated strong evidence that
megacryometeors are falling all around the globe.
More than 50 falls have been
confirmed, and researchers believe that's a small fraction
of the actual number, since others may hit unoccupied areas
or melt before discovery. Most megacrymeteor falls occur in
January, February and March. Megacryometeors show the
telltale onionskin layering seen in hailstones.
They also contain dust particles
and air pockets found in hail. But they are formed in
cloudless skies, a notion that defies research on hail
- 25 July to 23 Sept. -
India - red rain sporadically fell; staining clothes with an
appearance similar to that of blood. Yellow, green, and
black rain was also reported. The rains were the result of
the atmospheric disintegration of a comet, according to a
study conducted at the School of Pure and Applied Physics of
the MG University by Dr Godfrey Louis and his student
The red rain cells were devoid
of DNA which suggests their extra-terrestrial origin. The
findings published in the international journal
'Astrophysics and Space Science' state that the cometery
fragment contained dense collection of red cells.
- 6 June - asteroid/comet explosion over the Mediterranean.
Estimated at five to 10 meters in diameter, it released a burst
of energy comparable to the nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima,
- 24 Sept. - near Bodaibo (Bodaybo),
near Irkutsk, Siberia - 1:50 am - Eye-witness accounts of
the event reported a large luminous object falling to Earth
near Bodiabo in Siberia. Hunters in the region have also
reported the existence of a crater surrounded by burnt
forest suggesting that an impact event had occurred.
The event was detected by
near-by geophones as a moderate-earthquake. The event was
also detected by a U.S. anti-missile defense military
satellite. Some attempts were made to define the magnitude
of the explosion. US military analysts calculated it was
between 0.2 - 0.5 kilotons, while Russian physicist
Andrey Olkhovatov estimates it at 4 - 5 kilotons.
Information about the event
appeared in the mass media and among scientists after only a
week. Another report says it occurred on the 25th of
September at 10:00 p.m.
- June - Auckland, New Zealand -
Meteor crashes through roof of home, damages sofa. The
meteorite was a four billion-year-old 1.3 kg rock.
"There was this huge bang
and a cloud of dust and debris went through the front
room. I thought a car had hit the house."
In the only account in New
Zealand of a meteorite crashing into a house, the chunk of
space rock punched a hole through the roof of the Archers'
home, bounced off their couch, ricocheted off the ceiling
and back on to the couch before ending up on the floor.
- 3 Sept. - a small asteroid exploded in the stratosphere above
Antarctica depositing sufficient micron-sized dust particles to
cause 'local cooling, and much speculation as to the possible
effects on the ozone layer.
- 1 Feb. - Canada - In Calgary on February 1st, 20 people
reported seeing a fireball, an exceptionally bright meteor,
streak across the sky just before 7 a.m., lasting for several
seconds before breaking up into fragments. It was estimated that
remnants of the meteorite landed about 400 km south of Calgary
somewhere in Montana about two minutes after it appeared as a
ball of fire.
- 1 Feb. - Bangladesh - A
'meteor' from outer space fell with a big bang on a field in
Singpara village of sadar upazila yesterday afternoon
creating panic and curiosity among people. No one was
reported hurt. On information Superintendent of Police
Khandker Golam Farooq rushed to the spot and asked his
companions and villagers to dig the earth near the house of
one Fazlur Rahman from where smoke was still emitting. To
their amazement they found a lead-like black material three
feet below the earth.
Hot and weighing 2.5kg, the
triangular material looked like a mortar shell, witnesses
said. The meteor was kept in custody of the Thakurgaon
- 17, 20 Feb. - Scotland - The
hunt is on for the crash sites of two meteors near Stirling
Castle. Scientists have been spurred into action by reports
of spectacular "balls of fire" falling in the area. If
discovered, they would be the first meteorites confirmed to
have hit north of the Border for almost 100 years.
The incidents, reported by
several witnesses, were on the evenings of Friday, February
17 and the following Monday, February 20.
"Although meteorite falls
are rare everywhere, Scotland seems to have escaped
remarkably lightly. There have only been four meteorites
recovered from Scotland, compared with more than 18 from
England and Wales. Statistically, we are overdue another
- 12 April - Australia - A Perth
astronomer says a spectacular light show in the sky 12/3 was
a meteor. Sightings were made as far south as Albany and
inland through the Wheat Belt. It lit up the countryside for
hundreds of kilometers around the south-west of Western
Witnesses say the the sky lit up
about 9:00pm AEDT, and the light was followed by a
thundering sound that shook buildings.
- 4 May - TEXAS - Astronomers
said a large meteor shower crossed straight over El Paso
just before 9:45 p.m. Thursday the 4th of May.
was so large that it cast an orange glow against the
"The animals were going
wild, the horses were bucking and dogs were barking and
howling and then, all of a sudden right above my house,
there was a big bright light and then just 'Bang!' And
it lit up the five acres that are around us, and then I
covered my eyes like this because it was bright and when
it got past I saw there was a tail and it just went 'Shhhh'
toward the Hueco Mountains."
- 2 June - Minnesota, Wisconsin,
North Dakota and Canada - a fireball was spotted estimated
to be some 20 miles above the Earth's surface. A sonic boom
was heard in the Lake of the Woods area of Minnesota, so
there may be some pieces of the meteor that survived the
- 25 June - Pennsylvania -
Residents of the Tuscarawas Valley who heard a deafening
boom about 12:40 a.m. Monday the 19th and stepped outside
likely saw what one person described as "a marvelous
fireball with red streaks in the sky." It probably was a
meteor falling through the atmosphere.
Numerous callers reported a
large red fireball. Several said their homes shook. New
Philadelphia police said they received reports from several
callers who witnessed the fireball or heard the boom. One
woman described it as "a blue light that lit up the sky and
went down." Police in Dover said multiple callers reported
they heard a loud bang and something rattled their windows.
Air Traffic Command in
Washington, D.C. confirmed that Cleveland's control center
was checking into a meteor shower that occurred within its
- 10 July - South Africa - An
ice ball that landed in Douglasdale, South Africa, might be
one of the first 'megacryometeors' recorded in Africa. The
ice ball, which landed on the pavement in suburban
Douglasdale last week, was about the size of a microwave
oven. The impact of the ice ball's fall created a small
crater on the pavement, which was covered with pieces of
Despite sharing many chemical
characteristics with hail, ice balls are formed under
clear-sky conditions. Ice balls have been recorded since the
19th century. They have the potential to damage people,
buildings and cars, but no injuries were reported as a
result of this one.
- 14 July - Norway - At 10:20am
a bus driver from Ås, south of Oslo, was sitting in the
outhouse at his holiday cabin near Rygge on the 14th of July
when he heard an enormous blast. Right after that, some
particles from a meteor that exploded over the Oslo area
rained down just outside.
He said he didn't think too much
about the surprising blast at first, dismissing it as
probably coming from an exercise at a nearby military air
station at Rygge. But he said the blast and the rumbling it
caused was terrible. He was just hooking the door when he
heard a new noise, a whistling sort of sound, followed by a
new bang on some aluminum plates lying near the outhouse.
Sure enough, it was particles from a meteor that exploded
somewhere over the Oslo Fjord area on Friday morning.
Astronomers confirm Martinsen's
remarkable discovery of meteorite particles on his property.
"This is Norway's 14th
meteorite, but we've never heard about a meteorite
landing so close to a person before."
A family from Moss, south of
Oslo, came home from their summer holidays to find a
meteorite in their garden. It's another remnant of the
meteor that exploded over the Oslo Fjord area on the 14th of
July. Astronomers in Norway are calling the discovery of
meteorites around southeast Norway "incredible," and urge
local residents to keep looking for more.
"Two branches on our plum
tree were broken. I lifted them up and there lay this
It had made a hole measuring
about seven centimeters in his lawn.
- 12 Sept. - New Zealand - A
small piece of rock that has been found in a paddock in New
Zealand may be a piece of the meteorite that streaked across
the sky there Tuesday the 12th, panicking residents who
flooded emergency hotlines. A farmer found a 10cm by 5cm
piece of "almost weightless" rock in his field today near
the town of Dunsandel, south of Christchurch. It has been
sent to New Zealand's National Radiation Laboratory for
The meteorite tore across the
sky over the northern half of the South Island in the
afternoon, leaving a bright, burning trial behind it and
causing a sonic boom that rattled houses and shook the
ground. It then apparently erupted into a fireball, sending
forth a thick puff of smoke. People were sent running from
the homes and offices when they heard the boom, fearing
buildings could collapse. The sonic boom was registered on
The boom meant the meteorite was
probably travelling "very low". It was probably about the
size of a basketball as it shredded through the sky and
became a "terminal fireball" at a speed of about 40,000kph.
"If this had happened at
night, it would have lit up the whole countryside."
- 10 Oct. - A fire that destroyed a cottage near Bonn and
injured a 77-year-old man was probably caused by a meteor and
witnesses saw an arc of blazing light in the sky, German police
said on Friday. Burkhard Rick, a spokesman for the police in Siegburg east of Bonn, said the fire gutted the cottage and
badly burnt the man's hands and face in the incident on October
- 1 Dec. - NASA reports - Meteoroids are smashing into the Moon
a lot more often than anyone expected. - That's the tentative
conclusion of Bill Cooke, head of NASA's Meteoroid Environment
Office, after his team observed two Leonids hitting the Moon on
Nov. 17, 2006.
"We've now seen 11 and possibly 12 lunar impacts
since we started monitoring the Moon one year ago," says Cooke.
"That's about four times more hits than our computer models
- January - Altai Region, Russia
- Another expedition arrived to the Altai Republic to search
for meteorite, which has fallen this January, and to talk
with people, who witnessed this event. Expedition crew will
visit Uglovsky and Egorievsky districts, where an unknown
celestial body has fallen.
Later report: Russian social
science and research expedition "Kosmopoisk" has sent four
meteorite fragments found in Altai to Moscow laboratory.
Research, carried out in field, showed that there exists
high probability that two stones out of four are real
meteorite fragments. The expedition found a meteorite crater
1.5 kilometer away from their camp, but nasty weather
prevented them from detailed studying of said crater.
- January - Tampa, Florida - a 200-pound chunk of ice streaked
through the clear Florida sky and landed in the back seat of a
really nice red Ford Mustang. The car was totaled.
- 4 Jan - Authorities were
trying to identify a mysterious metallic object that crashed
through the roof of a house in eastern New Jersey.
Nobody was injured when the golf-ball sized object, weighing
nearly as much as a can of soup, struck the home and
embedded itself in a wall Tuesday night. ... Approximately
20 to 50 rock-like objects fall every day over the entire
planet, said Carlton Pryor, a professor of astronomy at
"It's not all that uncommon
to have rocks rain down from heaven," said Pryor, who
had not seen the object that struck the Monmouth County
home. "These are usually rocky or a mixture of rock and
- 10 January - Russia - a
meteorite fell in January in the Altai Territory in southern
Siberia and searchers found an extraterrestrial substance
which could be meteorite fragments.
"We have collected about 50
samples, and vitreous threads (traces of comet
substance) were discovered in the first of them using a
Local motorists and residents
witnessed the impact of a fiery ball, which eventually ended
in a loud sound resembling an explosion.
- 24 Jan. - Virginian, U.S. - Giles County residents were a
little shaken after a tremor-like event, others say they heard a
loud "thunder-like" sound. Virginia Tech researchers say they
received several calls about a meteor sighting the same time of
the tremors. The bizarre incident took place around 8pm.
Researchers say the seismic station in Giles County did get a
very short but intense seismic signal.
- 31 Jan. - Turkey - Police were
inundated with calls from scores of people from Didim to
Bodrum after they heard a big bang and a flash of light
across the skies. The flashing green, yellow and red lights
were from a meteorite which crashed through the earth's
atmosphere and landed in Yesilkent.
A startled man revealed
that the rock had smashed a hole in the ground at the Green
Park Complex, at Yesilkent, narrowly missing him by ten
meters. Police reported that people from Bodrum, Milas and
Didim had heard a bang and seen the flashing light across
the skies at about 5:30pm.
- 4 Feb. - Midwestern U.S. -
Scores of people all over the Midwest and Upper Midwestern
United States reported seeing flames and fiery explosions in
the sky Sunday night. From southeastern Wisconsin to as far
as Des Moines, Iowa and St. Louis, people reported seeing
balls of fire, possibly meteors, streaking across the sky on
"We had a pilot reporting
seeing a meteor".
Reports came from residents in
central Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Wisconsin and Minnesota.
- 15 Feb. - Ohio - Something
happened at around 9 p.m. that a lot of people heard. But
nobody seems to have any idea what it was. "It" was a loud
bang, something loud enough to be heard all over the county,
and loud enough to make small objects move in houses. Rumors
range from an earthquake to a meteor strike, a sonic boom to
While we may never know for
sure, at least one scientist believes the meteor could be
the answer. There's no evidence to suggest an earthquake
could have caused the bang, especially not over the range
One man said he saw a meteor
with a relatively long trail, with red, green and gold
coloration. It was headed east to west and lasted about
three seconds; after it faded, the sonic boom washed over
"I saw it first. It was the
most eerie, cool, scary, wonderful thing. You just see
this dragon tail going across the sky. All of a sudden,
everything goes boom."
- 22 Feb. - Rajasthan, India - Three people were killed and four
injured in a mysterious blast in a village in India's northern
Rajasthan state Thursday that villagers claim was caused by a
meteorite, news reports said. Residents of Banchola village in
Bundi district, about 200 kilometers south of Rajasthan capital
Jaipur, said the victims were sitting with some iron scrap in an
open field when an "object" fell from the sky and hit them, IANS
news agency reported.
- 23 Feb. - Panama - Panamanian geologists found a meteorite at
Rio Hato, a coastal town west of the capital Panama City. The
meteorite fell onto Rio Hato's beach on Friday. The landing was
witnessed by a security guard, who described it as a ball of
fire crashing down from the sky onto the sand. The 4.2 kg red
object, measuring 20 cm in diameter, was to be X-rayed for more
details. The meteorite shows burn marks on its exterior, and
appears to be mainly carbon-based, in contrast to most
meteorites, which mainly contain iron.
- 15 Mar. - What Richard Yip-Chuck saw fall into a farmer's
field Sunday evening looked like a long, white ball with orange
sparks shooting off the back. The Holland Landing resident was
driving along Hwy. 7 with his wife, Ele, and sons Kyle, 12, and
10-year-old Dylan, when they saw what looked like a fireball
plummet to earth.
- 29 Mar - Flaming debris of a possible meteor almost hit a
plane - The pilots of a Chilean passenger jet reported seeing
flaming debris fall past their aircraft as it approached the
airport at Auckland, New Zealand. The captain "made visual
contact with incandescent fragments several kilometers away".
The pilots reported the near-miss to air traffic controllers,
reportedly saying the noise of the debris breaking the sound
barrier could be heard above the roar of his aircraft's engines.
- 10 May - Spain - Fireball spotted across central Spain.
Scientists think some fragments may have fallen to earth in the
Ciudad Real area. A fireball fell across the centre of the
country on Thursday night with sightings in Cuenca, Toledo,
Ciudad Real and Valladolid. Scientists believe it was a
meteorite and say it's quite a normal phenomenon, possibly a
fragment from a comet which fell from earth orbit.
- 14 May - Hubbardton, Vermont - Recorded as a 2.1 temblor on
the Richter scale, a quake hit at 4:10 a.m. One Hubbardton
resident who said he was wide awake at 4 a.m. said he not only
felt the earthquake, he saw what caused it. He said he saw
something in the sky to the northeast of Lake Hortonia.
believes he saw a meteorite and that's what triggered the
"It was like a streak of fire. I've heard meteorites
hit before and that was what it sounded like. It was no
earthquake, it was a meteor."
- 26 May - Woburn, Mass. - Meteorite punched a hole through a
- 7 June - Norway - A large
meteorite struck in northern Norway this week, landing with
an impact an astronomer compared to the atomic bomb used at
Hiroshima. The meteorite appeared as a ball of fire just
after 2 a.m. Wednesday, June 7th, visible across several
hundred miles in the sunlit summer sky above the Arctic
'I saw a brilliant flash of
light in the sky, and this became a light with a tail of
smoke. I heard the bang seven minutes later. It sounded
like when you set off a solid charge of dynamite a
kilometer (0.62 miles) away.'
The meteor struck a mountainside
The country's leading astronomer
said he expects the meteor to prove to be the largest to hit
Norway in modern times, even bigger than the 198-pound Alta
meteorite of 1904.
'If the meteorite was as
large as it seems to have been, we can compare it to the
Hiroshima bomb. Of course the meteorite is not
radioactive, but in explosive force we may be able to
compare it to the bomb.'
- 10 June - Sri Lanka - The
strange objects that lit the night skies on June 10 have now
been confirmed as meteors. "This is the first time that
meteors of such magnitude have fallen in Sri Lanka. The
shockwaves and vibrations have been heard throughout the
country, from Galle to Puttalam.
A Senior Consultant believes
that two large meteoroids entered the atmosphere, the larger
one splitting into two and the smaller one into about 25
fragments. The loud explosions were some of the particles
exploding, probably about 50 to 100 km above the ground. In
Kovinna, Andiambalama, at 9.05 p.m. on the 10th, a woman had
noticed something unusual in the western sky. A bright
light, almost as large as the full moon, appeared to be
moving towards her in a wide arc.
Alarmed by thoughts of terrorist
air attacks, she called out to her neighbor. Together they
watched fearfully as the glowing object drew closer, landed
on the roof and vanished completely. A few minutes later the
air vibrated with a loud explosion. The next day they
discovered that parts of the asbestos sheets on the roof
were charred and cracked.
A few pieces of rock and sand
were scattered around the damaged area. Similar incidents
were reported around the country that night. Several people
in areas such as Puttalam, Maho and Bingiriya also noted the
appearance of the bright light in the sky as well as the
loud explosion. In Kimbulapitiya a woman watched a flaming
object land on a house and heard the booming sounds soon
In Campbell Place, Dehiwala, the
roofs of two buildings were damaged, and a loud noise was
"24 asbestos sheets were
- 6 July - Cali, Colombia, S. America - an incoming object broke
apart in the lower atmosphere with a trio of ferocious
explosions that shattered windows and shook the ground
violently. Moments later, stones rained from the sky and pelted
homes in the poor barrios surrounding the city. Some smashed
through the roofs of homes. Recovered objects were chondritic
- 26 July - Iowa - 5:30AM - A Dubuque woman said she is lucky to
be alive after a 50 pound chunk of white ice crashed through the
roof of her home, landing about 15 feet away from where she was
standing. She said it sounded like a bomb exploded when the
massive ball of ice hit her roof. Other large chunks of ice fell
from the sky in this northeast Iowa city, tearing through nearby
trees. Dubuque had clear skies at the time the ice fell.
- 1 August - India - Hotipur (Sangrur)
village near Khanauri hit the headlines when a meteorite
fell in the fields on Wednesday night, leaving many
villagers baffled. The police have taken possession of the
8-cm meteorite to hand it over to a three-member team of
Geological Survey of India. Curious villagers queued up in
the fields to see the "heavenly object", while the farmer,
who was the only witness to the fall of the "fireball",
"I got scared of the big
fireball that was coming my way at 8:45 pm on Wednesday
night. I ran for cover as I felt that it will fall on
(May be hoax.)
- 11 Aug. - 12:09 am -
Representatives with the Sonora Police Department and both
the Tuolumne and Calaveras County Sheriff's Departments say
they fielded numerous calls early in the morning in regards
to a "loud boom," and "structures shaking." There were
several calls from residents who reported seeing "a blue
light," just before the "loud boom."
The incident reportedly occurred
at 12:09am. The Police Department notes that it also
received a call from a resident in Tuolumne, in which a
female reported seeing what she thought was fireworks, and
then something spiraling over her house. Early indication
from the law enforcement agencies is that the loud boom was
somehow the result of a meteor shower.
- 15 Sept. - Peruvian Highlands - The meteorite's impact sent
debris flying up to 820 feet (250 meters) away, with some
material landing on the roof of the nearest home 390 feet (120
meters) from the crater. Nearby residents who visited the impact
crater complained of headaches and nausea.
- 3 Oct. - Minnesota - Shortly
after 2 p.m., people across the Twin Cities reported seeing
a "metallic" object or "flaming ball" falling from the sky.
Broadcasters and emergency dispatchers got hundreds of calls
from people who saw the object traveling from the northeast
to the southwest.
Residents of Lyon County in far
southwestern Minnesota reported a loud boom that might have
been connected with the sightings in the Twin Cities. A man
who lives near the town of Amiret says it shook his house
and sounded like a sonic boom from an F-14 breaking the
sound barrier at close range. Coincidentally, at the same
time, drivers in the Twin Cities metro were dodging debris
in the middle of Interstate 94.
Some drivers said the debris
fell from the sky shortly after 2:00 p.m. Wednesday.
- 31 January - Didim, Turkey - POLICE were inundated with calls
from scores of people from Didim to Bodrum after they heard a
big bang and a flash of light across the skies. A startled
Abdullah Arıtürk revealed that the rock had smashed a hole in
the ground at the Green Park Complex, at Yeşilkent, narrowly
missing him by ten meters.
- 19 Feb. - U.S. Northwest - An
apparent meteor streaked through the sky over the Pacific
Northwest early Tuesday, drawing reports of bright lights
and sonic booms in parts of Washington, Oregon and Idaho.
Although a witness reported seeing the object strike the
Earth in a remote part of Adams County, in southeast
Washington, it still has not been found.
People in Washington, Oregon,
Idaho, Montana and British Columbia reported seeing the
bright fireball streaking across the sky about 5:30 a.m. At
least one person said the object exploded on impact in
eastern Washington and another report from southeastern
Washington said someone felt tremors from the blast.
- 5 Mar. - Ontario, Canada - The
Physics and Astronomy Department at Western has a network of
all-sky cameras in Southern Ontario that scan the sky
monitoring for meteors.
Associate Professor Peter
Brown, who specializes in the study of meteors and
meteorites, says that Wednesday evening (March 5) at 10:59
p.m. EST these cameras captured video of a large fireball
and the department has also received a number of calls and
emails from people who actually saw the light.
- 8 Mar. - Turkey - A resident
of Yaka said he heard a loud roaring noise at around 11:20
a.m. on the day the meteorite fell, sounding as if "a plane
"We were amazed to find such
a small stone after that thunderous sound. It was black
and about 40 centimeters in diameter, weighing three
kilograms at most," another said, adding that the
meteorite opened a small crater in the ground and
created a cloud of dust.
- 10 Mar. - Sudbury, Canada -
great balls of fire were seen falling from the sky - While
most sightings were reported around 1:30 p.m. near Sudbury,
Hagar, Highway 69 North and North Bay, Wayne Lachance
spotted something in the sky earlier in the morning.
Lachance was driving home to
Massey after a night shift at Vale Inco Ltd. when something
caught his eye around 7:30 a.m.
"I thought it was a real
bright star," he said. "It was getting brighter and
coming down with sparks." Lachance arrived home and
looked outside his bedroom window to see "spirals of
- 13 Mar. - Moon - Meteorite videotaped hitting the Moon.
- 6 April - Argentina - The space rock reportedly crashed late
Sunday somewhere in Entre Rios Province, some 260 miles
northwest of Buenos Aires, reports the daily Clarin, which
quoted a witness, Milton Blumhagen, a student and astronomy
"For three or four seconds I saw
an object in flames, changing color until it turned blue
when it approached the ground.''
A fire department source said the
impact was felt for miles around. No damage was reported.
- 15, 16, 18 April - Illinois -
Maybe we had a comet fragment impact or two or three over a
period of several nights? Perhaps a couple of overhead
explosions and then, later, a ground impact. Read the
following stories and judge for yourself:
That would explain booms and earthquake and lights in the
sky spread out over three days.
Damage Control: Mysterious booms,
lights over Indiana were just F-16s
A sonic boom and fireballs
and flaming debris that Kokomo-area residents reported
seeing in the sky Wednesday night prompted Howard
County's police agencies to conduct a two-hour search
for what many residents thought was a crashed aircraft.
As it turned out, the fireballs were flares fired by
F-16s that are part of the 122nd Fighter Wing, an
Indiana Air National Guard unit based at Fort Wayne
International Airport. ...
Staff Sgt. Jeff Lowry with Indiana National
Guard's headquarters in Indianapolis said the jets
taking part in the training are not supposed to exceed
the speed of sound, which is about 760 mph, because
supersonic speeds produce sonic booms.
He said the 122nd's commander, Col. Jeff Soldner,
will investigate why at least one jet reached supersonic
speeds Wednesday night over Howard and Tipton counties,
and also on Tuesday night over the Logansport area,
shaking the ground below. ...
He said F-16 training often involves the aircraft
dropping flares from more than 10,000 feet above the
ground, a technique that can allow the jets to evade
heat-seeking missiles in combat. ...
Logansport Police Chief A.J. Rozzi said he heard
a loud sonic boom on Tuesday night, and then heard the
sound of a jet high overheard. He said residents also
reported seeing fire streaks in the sky.
He said it is common for the 122nd to conduct missions
in the area and believes F-16 training almost certainly
explains the sights and sounds.
"They've been doing that
training for quite a while. I don't know what
maneuvers they're actually doing, but they do shoot
out streaks of light," he said.
5.4 earthquake rocks Illinois; felt
350 miles away
A 5.4 earthquake that
appeared to rival the strongest recorded in the region
rocked people awake up to 350 miles away early Friday,
surprising residents unaccustomed to such a powerful
The quake just before 4:37 a.m. was centered 6 miles
from West Salem, Ill., and 66 miles from Evansville,
Ind. It was felt in such distant cities as Chicago,
Cincinnati and Milwaukee, 350 miles north of the
epicenter, but there were no early reports of injuries
or significant damage. ....
"You could hear a roaring sound and the whole motel
shook, waking up the guests,'' Vibha Ambelal, manager of
the Super 8 Motel in Mount Carmel, Illinois, near the
epicenter, said in a telephone interview."
4.5 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Illinois
A 4.5-magnitude tremor
struck southern Illinois on Monday continuing the series
of aftershocks initiated by the 5.2 earthquake which hit
the region Friday morning, the U.S. Geological Survey
This was the 18th earthquake in that series and its
epicenter was approximately six miles below ground and
about 37 miles (60 km) north-northwest of Evansville,
Indiana, or about 131 miles (211 km) east of St. Louis,
the USGS revealed. [...]
The 18 aftershock earthquakes which followed Friday's
tremor haven't measured more than 3.9 on the Richter
scale, but the first one was the biggest to hit shake
the region called the Illinois basin-Ozark dome in over
- 16 April - Argentina - The
Asociación Entrerriana de Astronomía (AEA) [Entre
Ríos Astronomy Society, Argentina] has announced that on
Wednesday 16th April 2008, at approximately 19:30 hours, was
observed a highly luminous object that had all the
characteristics of a bolide. This object was sighted from
Paraná, Oro Verde and San Benito. According to witnesses,
the bolide was intensely bright, with colors fluctuating
between green, yellow and red.
It followed a roughly north-east trajectory towards the
south-west, with an angle of 75 degrees. One observer has
stated that the bolide exploded before disappearing.
It is not possible to discount the idea that this meteor
relates to a similar fall which occurred last week over
central Entre Ríos province, and which was observed across a
wide part of Argentina. The AEA has also received over the
past few days many reports of sightings of very luminous
objects in different parts from the country, e.g. from Mar
del Plata, Tucumán, Zárate, Concordia, Ituzaingó (Prov. de
- 17 April - Argentina - (This
may be the same as the previous report on 16 April) A
fireball fell somewhere in or nearby Entre Rios, 260 miles
northwest of Buenos Aires. Mariano Peter from the
Entrerriana Astronomy Association said there were reports
from 4 witnesses.
One of them described,
"a strong light
that passed at a high speed through the sky and at a low
altitude, going towards the south and then it fell in the
Another witness said,
"it was very bright and it
changed color between green and red."
The first fireball was reported in Entre Rios on April 6th,
2008 (see above).
A witness said:
"For three or four seconds I
saw an object in flames, changing color until it turned
blue when it approached the ground.''
A fire department source said
the impact was felt for miles around. The next day a
fragment of the space rock was recovered.
Smoke chokes Argentina's capital
Buenos Aires, Argentina --
Smoke blanketed the Argentine capital Friday as brush
fires apparently set deliberately consumed thousands of
acres in the provinces of Buenos Aires and Entre Ríos.
The smoke, from about 300 fires, is blamed for at least
two fatal traffic accidents this week that left eight
Sections of major highways and the Buenos Aires port,
among the busiest in the world, have been closed.
Incoming flights to the city's domestic airport, Jorge
Newbery Airpark, have been diverted.
The Argentine government has blamed farmers looking to
clear their land for crops and grazing for the fires,
which are estimated to cover 173,000 acres (70,000
"This is the largest
fire of this kind that we've ever seen," Argentine
Interior Minister Florencio Randazzo said Thursday.
Randazzo called the
situation a "disaster."
As of Friday morning, little progress had been made
extinguishing the blazes. [...]
- 20 April - Russia -
Another overhead explosion? Two killed,
300 left homeless in Russian Far East fires
Two people have died and 325
people including 18 children have been left homeless by
fires that ripped through the Amur Region in Russia's Far
East, local emergency services said.
The fires began on Sunday evening and continued until Monday
morning in seven districts of the region. Locals had set
light to dry grass to free land for farming and other
purposes, and the flames were spread by high winds, a police
source told RIA Novosti.
A total of 104 houses have been destroyed. One of those who
died in the fires was a disabled man who was unable to leave
A total of 50 rescuers have been involved in the
firefighting operation. People injured in the fires will
receive 20,000 rubles ($900) in compensation, local
Over 11,000 hectares have been destroyed in an estimated 59
forest fires currently burning in Russia's Far East, the
Natural Resources Ministry said.
Curious how this report is similar
to what happened several days ago in Argentina. And again,
farmers - they all decided to set fires on the same day -
burning grass and high winds are blamed for the vast damage and
We wonder what kind of excuse
authorities will invent when this kind of event will happen in a
non agricultural area.
As I said, this list is not exhaustive, though I am exhausted from
transcribing and pulling the data together!
In addition to updating
this list from other sources over the next few days, I hope that
readers will send in their finds and we can have the most complete
list available anywhere, excluding, of course, the classified data
that we won't be getting from our governments.
Meanwhile, of course, we begin to understand why Bill Gates -
formerly a regular guy turned
elitist - has invested in
his Seed Bank.
Ah, the joys of being at the top and the perils of being at the
bottom of the pyramidal hierarchy on this planet!
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