Reaktion Books, £14.95
The Indian Ocean earthquake and Boxing Day 2004 tsunami, the 2010 earthquake on Haiti, and Japan’s 2011 earthquake and tsunami are recent reminders of Nature’s destructive force. In this immensely readable book, packed with scientific and literary detail, Andrew Robinson looks at the historical and archaeological records to show that such events have shaped human development and society since earliest times. But evidence of Nature’s impact is not confined to cataclysmic events: one example cited by the author is the Colosseum in Rome, whose southern half collapsed because it sits on the alluvial bed of a former tributary of the River Tiber, while the northern half, standing on the stable riverbank, survives.
This article is an extract from the full article published in World Archaeology Issue 57. Click here to subscribe