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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: April ::
Re: 1580 Earthquake
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1156  Friday, 26 April 2002

[1]     From:   Gary Allen <
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        Date:   Friday, 26 Apr 2002 02:04:18 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1138 1580 Earthquake

[2]     From:   Matthew Steggle <
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        Date:   Friday, 26 Apr 2002 09:26:34 +0100
        Subj:   1580 Earthquake


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Gary Allen <
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Date:           Friday, 26 Apr 2002 02:04:18 EDT
Subject: 13.1138 1580 Earthquake
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1138 1580 Earthquake

Sophie Masson asks:

>Does anyone know if there are any records as to whether, and how, the
>April 6, 1580 earthquake, in Easter week, whose epicentre appears to
>have been Oxford(or at least Oxford appears to have suffered a
>reasonable amount of damage), affected Stratford? Apparently it was felt
>as far away as London--some sources say even in France, and that there
>were huge waves in the sea as well, and lives lost there. I've been
>looking for a calendar of events in Eliz. Stratford, which I've found
>before, but cannot locate right now. I would be very grateful indeed for
>any information, or pointers to sites or books that may have that
>information.

There is some interesting information about the 1580 quake to be found
at:

http://www.geologyshop.co.uk/ukequakes.htm

According to that page, studies done in preparation for building the
Channel Tunnel indicate that the epicenter in 1580 was in the Channel
itself.

Further evidence of the tremors' reach is found in the online Annals of
Dunfermline:

http://www.tulbol.demon.co.uk/dunfermline/annals7.htm

which refer to the quake as having disturbed the 14-year-old King James
VI in Scotland.

Gary

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Matthew Steggle <
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Date:           Friday, 26 Apr 2002 09:26:34 +0100
Subject:        1580 Earthquake

I can't help with Sophie Masson's particular queries, but she might be
interested in two literary discussions of the event: Gabriel Harvey
talks about it in one of his letters to Spenser, and there's a
sixty-line poem by the little-known servant poet James Yates.  It's a
bit long to quote all of, but here are two sample stanzas  -

Oh sudden motion, and shaking of the earth,
 No blustering blastes, the weather calme and milde:
Good Lord the sudden rarenesse of the thing
 A sudden feare did bring, to man and childe,
   They verely thought, as well in field as Towne,
   The earth should sinke, and the houses all fall downe.

Well let vs print this present in our heartes,
 And call to God, for neuer neede we more:
Crauing of him mercy for our misdeedes,
 Our sinfull liues from heart for to deplore,
   For let vs thinke this token doth portend,
   If scourge nere hand, if we do still offend.

- from James Yates, "Verses written for a requisite remembrance of the
earth quake which happened on Wednesday the 6. of Aprill. 1580. betwene
5. and 6. of the clocke at night of the same day", in The Castell of
Courtesy (1582).

All the best,
  Matt.

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