Historical Quakes with Some Shaky Dates
Posted 20 December 2015 by Joseph Ritrovato
All Rights Reserved
It was dawn in Catania, Italy on February 4th, 1169 A.D. That was the day before the feast of Saint Agatha of Sicily. Many worshipers were packed into the great cathedral of Catania with 44 Benedictine monks and the local Bishop presiding. The Mount Etna volcano was erupting and, like in the year 251 A.D., the locals intended to hold up the veil that covered Saint Agatha's remains in order to protect them from its wrath. What they didn't know until it was too late, was that an earthquake of approximately 6.8M (likely larger) was about to destroy the huge church that they were in and half of the city as well. As many as 15,000 people lost their lives in Catania that morning and as much as another 10,000 deaths occurred outside of the city. The earthquake also set off a tsunami which was responsible for many of the deaths.
If one were to construct an astrological chart for this earthquake, one would convert the date to February 11, 1170 A.D. (at 0545UT). The reason 7 days are added is because, at the time, the Julian or O.S. (Old Style) calendar was in use and the Gregorian or N.S. (New Style) calendar was that many days in advance of the Julian date. At the time of this earthquake, the beginning of the year occurred in March, around the spring equinox. As a result any year given before that version of a new year date and after December 31, would need to have the year advance by one year to coincide with the modern, Gregorian (or N.S.) version of the calendar date.
If one looks at Astro-aspect values on that day, one would see a peak of 17.55 at 2 hours before the earthquake occurred.
great earthquake that struck Manila, the Philippines, on 30 November 1619
is estimated to have been as strong as a magnitude 8 shock. The
effect it had on houses of worship: destroyed the Vigan Cathedral,
collapsed the Lal-lo and Tocolano churches in Cagayan, and the church
in Dingras, Ilocos Norte was severely damaged. This temblor was so
violent that it caused many landslides, burying several valley
villages completely, new springs began to flow and rivers changed
their courses. In addition, mud and sand was ejected from the
ground. Manila was the scene of near total destruction. Many people
were killed (no exact figure is known). The local time of when this
seismic event occurred was reported to have been at noon or approximately 0400UT. There was a peak in Astro-aspect values at
0520UT on the 1st of December, 1619 (value=11.0), with another spike of values related to the
primary asteroids at 1020UT (value=7.43).
A similar sized quake (estimated to have been 7.9 in magnitude) again struck the Manila area 26 years later (to the day) on 30 November 1645. It caused more damage than perhaps any other earthquake in the history of Manila in the Philippines. It is believed to have been responsible for the death of at least 3,000 people (approximately 600 Spanish were known dead with an untold number of the native population). This quake was strongly felt from the southern coast of Batangas and Tayabas to the northern part of Cagayan. The time of the event was between 8pm and 8:30pm locally which was converted to 1220UT. There was a large peak of 32.19 in Astro-aspect values, at 2025UT on 30 November.
Both of these two earthquakes occurred during the Feast of St. Andrew, which was celebrated every November 30th in the Philippines. Since Spain was the ruler of the Philippines at the time, the new style (N.S.) or Gregorian calendar was in use. However, they were a day behind the rest of the other countries in the world who used this calendar. This error was not corrected until the last day of the year was skipped in 1844. What this means is that these two quakes
actually occurred on 1 December, rather than 30 November. As a result, the peak in Astro-aspect values was 1h20m after the first earthquake in 1619 and 16 hours before the second earthquake in 1645.
All historical references point to the Port Royal, Jamaica quake that killed over 2,000 people in 1692, as occurring on the 7th of June. Some of the reports also say that it was on a Tuesday. Since, in the Gregorian calendar, the 7th of June would fall on a Saturday, one would think that the date was actually the Julian date, but it apparently was not. The British ruled Jamaica at the time of the quake, taking it over from the Spanish in 1655. Before they did, the natives there were using the Gregorian calendar because that was what the Spanish used well before the British did. When they seized the island, the British were still using the old Julian calendar (continuing to do so until the year 1752). After taking control of the island, they apparently did not change the calendar back to Julian to bring the two calendars in line. I also found a reference to an historian of Jamaica who stated that all of the markers of the graves there used the Gregorian calendar.
The reason for the mix-up appears to have been that the report of the Jamaican earthquake appeared in England long after it occurred and the reported occurrence on a Tuesday was an error caused by an English reporter looking at his Julian calendar on the wall and getting the day of the week for the 7th of June from that, rather than doing the research necessary to find out what the day of the week actually was based on the date style used at the location of the earthquake. Another clue that it wasn't on a Tuesday was a report that involved two gentlemen at an eating and drinking establishment in Port Royal on the morning of the earthquake, who were meeting after one had just performed a religious ceremony (unlikely on a Tuesday, but not as unlikely on a Saturday). The earthquake occurred at 11:40 a.m. (local time) or 1646UT, with a peak of 25.14 in Astro-aspect values 5h58m later.
In 1762, ten years after the British converted to the Gregorian calendar, there was a great earthquake in Bangladesh, perhaps as large as 8.8 in magnitude. It apparently killed at least 700 people, mostly British, with an unknown total number of natives. India began converting to the Gregorian calendar in 1758, which took a few years for the whole country to convert to (Bangladesh was at the time part of India). I found a reference that the earthquake occurred on the 22nd of March, which the scientists in the British Isles converted to the 2nd of April. That I feel was a mistake. The date should have already been in the Gregorian calendar, so that the conversion was likely a second, needless or double conversion. Unfortunately, I can't prove that the March 22nd date was actually in the Gregorian calendar already, but astrological indicators point in that direction. The local time of this quake was 5pm which converts to approximately 1100UT. At 0437UT there was a peak of Astro-aspect values of 28.78 or less than 6.5 hours before the earthquake (if the 22nd of March was the actual date).
I will close by reviewing the dates and times for two ancient earthquakes that occurred at Antioch in the 5th and 6th century A.D (then in the Byzantine Empire and now in Turkey). The first one is said by most sources to have occurred on 14 September 458 A.D. (in the N.S. or Gregorian calendar or Saturday the 13th in the O.S. or Julian calendar), with the earthquake occurring at 4 hours past twilight. However, the actual date appears to be 11 September 458 A.D. (N.S. or Gregorian with an O.S. or Julian date of Wednesday the 10th of September) as given by Robert Mallet in his comprehensive earthquake catalog that was published in London in the mid 1800s. Using the coordinates of 36N12, 36E06 and an estimate of 1549UT for sunset, the time of the earthquake comes out to 2001UT (since the hours were then divisions of 12 between sunrise and sunset they would have equaled 1h03m each at that time of year). Interestingly, there is a peak in Astro-aspect values of 34.35 at 0228UT on 12 September 458 A.D. (or 6h27m after the quake). I estimate that this earthquake would have been equivalent to a 6.9 magnitude (Mw) seismic event. The death toll from this earthquake is estimated to have been 60,000.
An even larger, more destructive, and deadlier earthquake in Antioch, occurred as early as May 19 or as late as May 29 in the year 526 A.D (based on the Julian calendar). My estimate yields 26 May 526 A.D. (N.S. or Gregorian, with the O.S. or Julian date of 24 May 526 A.D.). This seismic event reportedly occurred at mid-day (again per Mallet) which translates to 0929UT with the coordinates of 36N14, 36E07. There was a peak in Astro-aspect values of 34.39, at 1021UT or 52 minutes later.
The source of John of Ephesus gave that this earthquake occurred at the 7th hour of the day. Based on dividing the time between sunup and sundown by 12 on that day and multiplying by 7 and then adding that to the sunup time, one gets a time of 1041UT. However, I have settled on a time of 1029UT, which places Pluto on the IC (a common spot for it during a significant seismic event such as this was). Coincidentally, this is also an exact hour after my estimate of the mid-day time (which would have then been the 6th hour of the day).
The casualties from this earthquake, which leveled the city and was followed by a massive fire that lasted many days, came to 255,000 making it one of the deadliest earthquakes on record. One of the reasons for such a high number of deaths is sometimes sited as due to a large influx of visitors from outside the city who came to celebrate Ascension Day (which was to take place the next day). This last religious holiday normally is celebrated on a Thursday, 40 days after Easter. However, the date of the 26th of May (NS) that I have chosen falls on a Sunday.
There are at least two possible scenarios that can resolve this. One is that people would begin their celebration by attending Mass on the Sunday before Ascension Day. The 26th of May (N.S.), or the date of the quake, would have been that Sunday, with Ascension Day four days later, but due to the chronicler's embellishment of the story or the story being retold over the course of many generations, the difference between the quake and Ascension day was reduced from 4 days to 1 day. Or a second possibility was that the days of the weeks in Antioch were out of sync with other countries at the time.
can not prove that these are the actual dates for these two
earthquakes, but I feel fairly confident that they are the best
estimates available. Interestingly, my proposed dates of these two
earthquakes both occurred three days earlier than the most accepted
dates in published works on the subject. This may be a clue that the calendar used in Antioch at the time of these two earthquakes was 3 days off, which resulted in them celebrating Ascension day 3 days early or the day after a May 26th (N.S.) earthquake in 526 A.D.
Besides this calamitous earthquake, there was an earthquake (pre-shock) and fire in Antioch in October, 525 A.D. and a very powerful earthquake (aftershock) on the 26th of November, 528 A.D, at the 3rd hour of the day or 0637UT with a peak of 25.64 in Astro-aspect values at 1430UT (the date is N.S. and my estimate). This last earthquake apparently threw down all buildings that had been rebuilt from the earlier earthquakes and fires.
With the exception of the second illustration (a screen shot from the Kepler 8.0 astrology program), the following links take you to the source of each image used above in order of appearance: