Rising seas 'clue' in sunken world off Orkney
2009 12 26

From: news.bbc.co.uk


Among the many structures found submerged was this apparent table with four supports


A unique discovery of submerged man-made structures on the seabed off Orkney could help find solutions to rising sea levels, experts have said.

They said the well preserved stone pieces near the island of Damsay are the only such examples around the UK.

It is thought some of the structures may date back thousands of years.

Geomorphologist Sue Dawson said that people have survived and adapted in the past and it is that adaption to climate change that needs to be learned from.

One of the team, archaeologist Caroline Wickham-Jones, of the University of Aberdeen, said of their freezing investigations under the December seas off Orkney: "We have certainly got a lot of stonework. There are some quite interesting things. You can see voids or entrances.

"There's this one feature that is like a stone table - you've got a large slab about a metre and a half long and it's sitting up on four pillars or walls so the next thing we need to do is to get plans and more photographs to try and assess and look for patterns.

"The quality and condition of some of the stonework is remarkable. Nothing like this has ever been found on the seabed around the UK."

Geophysicist Richard Bates, from the Scottish Oceans Institute, said: "We've got other sites down on the south coast of England where we have got submerged landscapes, meso-neolithic landscapes as we have here but what we haven't got anywhere else is actual structures.

"I don't say that's unique - that we'll never find that anywhere else, but so far we haven't seen such things before."

In general Scotland's mainland has been getting higher - but the surrounding islands have been sinking.

Sue Dawson, a geomorphologist from the University of Dundee, has been studying how and why the coast line is constantly changing.

She said: "One of the key premises behind a lot of the study of the past is that the past is a key to the present and the future.

"So we can look to times when maybe environmental changes have been much more rapid and much more catastrophic in some instances and people have survived and adapted and it's that adaption to climate change is one of the key things that we need to get to grips with."

The experts said the seabed around Orkney may be littered with man-made structures.


Experts believe this could be a submerged grave headstone
Richard Bates added: "We can look at the terrestrial landscape around here and see how man's occupied that.

"Pretty much anywhere in Orkney you can see a vista which has part of man within it, ancient man in the environment.

"The similar case is going to be in this drowned landscape so the few places we have seen so far are the biggest features but we expect to see much more as we dissect that landscape in finer and finer detail."

And they believe that while looking at an uncertain future it may pay to look into the past.

Caroline Wickham-Jones said: "The really interesting thing about this bay is the stories relating to things under the sea and sea-level change. Our ancestors were dealing with similar problems to ourselves and we'd like to see how they coped with it."


Source: news.bbc.co.uk



Related Articles
Megalithic pint, anyone?
Stonehenge builders' houses found
Ancient Civilization Discovered at the Bottom of Lake Issyk Kul in the Kyrgyz Mountains
Ancient mariner tools found in Cyprus
Isis and Osiris in Attica
Stonehenge Beneath the Waters of Lake Michigan?


Latest News from our Front Page

Water rationing hits California: limit of 50 gallons per person per day or face fines of $500
2014 09 29
Millions of Californians are about to be hit with strict water rationing -- daily "allocation" numbers that represent the maximum amount of water you’re allowed to use for any purpose. Households that exceed the allocation limit will face stiff fines of hundreds of dollars per violation. "In July, the State Water Resources Control Board passed stage one emergency regulations, giving powers ...
Much of Earth’s Water is Older than the Sun
2014 09 29
Much of the water on Earth and elsewhere in the solar system likely predates the birth of the sun, a new study reports. The finding suggests that water is commonly incorporated into newly forming planets throughout the Milky Way galaxy and beyond, researchers said — good news for anyone hoping that Earth isn’t the only world to host life. “The implications of ...
Did the Vikings Get a Bum Rap?
2014 09 29
A Yale historian wants us to rethink the terrible tales about the Norse. This illustration shows the stereotype of Viking marauders wreaking mayhem, even on clergy. The scene depicts the monastery at Clonmacnoise, Ireland. The Vikings gave no quarter when they stormed the city of Nantes, in what is now western France, in June 843—not even to the monks barricaded in the ...
David Cameron Says Non-Violent Conspiracy Theorists Are Just As Dangerous As ISIS
2014 09 29
David Cameron told the U.N. that "non-violent extremism" is just as dangerous as terrorism and must be eradicated using all means at the government’s disposal. He references 9/11 and 7/7 Truthers as examples of the type of extremism that must be dealt in a similar fashion to ISIS. If you thought Obama’s War is Peace speech to the U.N. was creepy, ...
NY Times: Europe’s Anti-Semitism Comes Out of the Shadows
2014 09 28
NY Times Whines about European "Anti-Semitism" In the wake of the conflict in Gaza, three communities became flash points of violence and began contending with hatred they thought was buried in the past. Read the NY Times hit piece on Europe here Below is a rebuttal from Mike King’s The Anti-New York Times at tomatobubble.com: Strike up the violins and break out the barf ...
More News »