Skip to comments.Noah's Ark Flood Spurred European Farming
Posted on 01/24/2008 3:04:09 PM PST by blam
Noah's Ark flood spurred European farming
Ancient Canadian flood cascaded changes across Europe
Randy Boswell , CanWest News Service
Published: Monday, November 19, 2007
A British scientist has found evidence linking the catastrophic collapse of a glacial ice dam in Canada more than 8,000 years ago and the rapid spread of agriculture across Europe around the same time.
The dramatic discharge of freshwater from prehistoric Lake Agassiz - which covered much of Central Canada at the end of the last ice age - has long been blamed for altering global climate patterns and raising sea levels around the world by at least a metre in a matter of months.
The deluged shorelines caused by the colossal Canadian gusher have even been associated with the "great flood" myths common to many ancient cultures - including the biblical story of Noah's Ark.
A file picture taken 15 May 2004 shows the Ararat mountain. The snow-capped mountain -- named in the Bible as the place Noah's Ark grounded after the Great Flood -- dominates the horizon from as far away as Armenia's capital Yerevan.
Now, University of Exeter geologist Chris Turney believes he has traced the sudden proliferation of farming across neolithic Europe to an exodus of coastal people moving inland to escape the results of the Agassiz flood.
"It still blows my mind to think that a release of water from Canada could set off a cascade of changes all the way across in Europe," Turney told CanWest News Service. "It just goes to show how people and the environment are intimately linked."
The existence of a supersized Lake Agassiz, named for a leading 19th-century geologist, has been known since the late 1800s. Formed some 12,000 years ago from the meltwater of retreating glaciers at the end of the last full ice age, the lake was encircled by beaches still visible today as sandy ridges throughout Central and Western Canada.
Initially centred around the present Ontario-Manitoba border, Lake Agassiz formed, at its greatest extent, a 1.5-million-square-kilometre freshwater basin - an area larger than the combined areas of Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
University of Manitoba geologist Jim Teller's reconstruction of the lake's dying throes has kick-started a worldwide wave of research into what was undoubtedly one of the most awesome natural events in Canadian prehistory.
With the lake at the greatest width and depth ever in its 4,000-year lifespan, the glacier that had dammed Agassiz's northern shore broke somewhere along ice-bound Hudson Bay. A huge torrent gushed into the ocean, draining a volume of fresh water equal to about 15 Lake Superiors in a few months.
Some of this country's earliest aboriginal occupants may have even witnessed the epic occurrence since the peopling of Canada roughly coincides with the retreat of the glaciers.
Teller has also theorized Agassiz's final, cataclysmic burst caused such a surge of seawater around the world it might have given rise to the Noah's Ark saga and other ancient accounts of massive floods.
Among the effects, scientists believe, was the breaching of an earthen barrier between the Mediterranean and Black seas in southeast Europe and extensive flooding of the Black Sea shoreline.
Turney, author of the newly published Bones, Rocks and Stars: The Science of When Things Happened, specializes in reconstructing ancient events from the archeological and geological record.
His study, published in the latest edition of Quaternary Science Reviews, shows that up to 145,000 people from farming sites near the Black Sea would have been forced out of their lands by the flooding and into territory occupied by hunter-gatherer cultures of inland Europe.
"The collapse of the Laurentide Ice Sheet and release of freshwater 8,740 to 8,160 years ago abruptly raised global sea levels by up to 1.4 metres," the study says. "Flooding of coastal areas led to the sudden loss of land favoured by early farmers and initiated an abrupt expansion of activity across Europe, driven by migrating Neolithic peoples."
Turney tracked the sudden spread of European farming about 8,000 years ago by mapping the locations and dates of the earliest known agricultural settlements discovered by archeologists. What the data shows, he says, is a clear sequence of flooding, migration and resettlement of farmers across Europe after the Lake Agassiz deluge.
I've speculated that there was an even earlier 'breach' of the Mediterranean at Gilbralter and perhaps a similar breaching of the Gulf Of Mexico.
Similar article...same title:
The Black Sea breach has been proposed as having caused the biblical flood for some time. This is the first time I’ve seen heard of a connection to the Canadian event. That is also familiar, but I think the connection is new.
“Then the LORD said to Al Gore, Get thee into thy back yard and build thee an ark out of your father’s toxic waste dump, for the global warming from Sodom and Gommorah and San Francisco are ever increasing my wrath!”
What’s the consensus on the Lake Agassiz event? I was recently reading something relating it to the Carolina Bays event 12900? years ago.
May be the first connection I've seen too. Albeit, RightWhale may have spoken of a connection in the past.
So fire, ice, earthquake, or kinetic kill.
However, the British Isles got majorly-separated from Europe about that time.
God owes a lot of money to Gore’s carbon credit company.
When I was much younger some people I used to know then used to smoke some kind of tobacco and then come out with these kinds of revelations.
When Lake Agassiz broke out it flooded all the way down the Mississippi and carried all of Canada's topsoil down to Illinois and even Oklahoma. The weight was also unsettling to the region and perhaps contributed to the new Madrid series of earthquakes, but at least the soil was still loose enough to be greatly disturbed during the earthquakes. Later the Dust Bowl moved much of that topsoil again, which surprised some people but shouldn't have since it was recently deposited and wasn't that well rooted.
Yup. My grandmother Mrs Smith's people (Dad's Mom) in Scotland and Finland, haplogroup U5a1a, were seperated by this event. Previously they could walk across (What is now the North Sea) for a visit.
BTW, Cheddar Man was/is haplogroup U5a too.
But I thought the world was only 4000 years old???
I think making a causal connection is a real stretch. The world was getting warmer, growing seasons were longer, glaciers were retreating. Sounds as though it was a good time to start agriculture.
There can be no exact timing on events that far in the past.
And if the Black Sea Flooded as a result, wouldn't the final effect on sea level be just about all even?
Ignore dendrochronology. They have a continuous calendar going back that far. When they finally pull up a post from a building down in the oxygen-free depths of the Black Sea they will be able to date it to the year the tree was cut.
I looked up Chris Turney on Amazon and ordered his most recent book. I’ll let you know later if it’s a good buy.