Cooling and societal change during the Late Antique Little Ice Age from 536 to around 660 AD

Büntgen U, Myglan VS, Ljungqvist FS, McCormick M, Di Cosmo N, Sigl M, Jungclaus J, Wagner S, Krusic PJ, Esper J, Kaplan JO, de Vaan MAC, Luterbacher J, Wacker L, Tegel W & Kirdyanov AV

Nature Geoscience, vol. 9, 231-236, 2016

https://doi.org/10.1038/ngeo2652

This paper is a product of PAGES' Euro-Med2k working group.

Additional information to accompany:

"Cooling and societal change during the Late Antique Little Ice Age from 536 to around 660 CE"

Authors: Büntgen U, Myglan VS, Charpentier Ljungqvist F, McCormick M, Di Cosmo N, Sigl M, Jungclaus J, Wagner S, Krusic PJ, Esper J, Kaplan JO, de Vaan MAC, Luterbacher J, Wacker L, Tegel W & Kirdyanov AV

Nature Geoscience
Published online 8 February 2016
DOI: 10.1038/ngeo2652

Access the article here.

Access the PAGES press release here.

Please note, ALL authors can be contacted in English, but if you prefer a specific language, see Contact Information below.

For more complex questions, please telephone or email your query through to the authors who will respond within 24 hours.

Swiss German and German
Ulf Büntgen (corresponding author)

Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL
Birmensdorf, Switzerland
Tel: +41 44 739 2679; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

German
Juerg Luterbacher (plus questions regarding the proxy-based paleoclimate research)
Dept. of Geography
Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Germany
Tel: +49 641 993 6210; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jan Esper (plus questions regarding the proxy-based paleoclimate research)
Geographisches Institute
University of Mainz, Germany
Tel: +49 6131 392 2296; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

English
Mike McCormick (plus questions regarding historical aspects of this study)
Department of History
Harvard University, USA
Tel: +1 617 495 2556; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nicola di Cosmo (plus questions regarding historical aspects of this study)
School of Historical Studies
Princeton University, USA
Tel: +1 609 734 8337; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Russian
Alexander V. Kirdyanov (plus questions regarding the Altai tree-ring data)
Laboratory of Tree-Ring Structure
V.N.Sukachev Institute of Forest SB RAS, Krasnoyarsk, Russia
Tel: +7 391 249 50 53; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Vladimir S. Myglan (plus questions regarding the Altai tree-ring data)
Siberian Federal University
Krasnoyarsk, Russia
Tel: +7 391 206 26 73; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Swedish, Norwegian and Danish
Fredrik Charpentier Ljungqvist
Historiska institutionen
Stockholms universitet
Tel: +4670 662 07 28; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Nature Geoscience
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Ulf Büntgen - (Corresponding author)

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Fredrik Charpentier Ljungqvist

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Michael Sigl

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Sebastian Wagner

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Jan Esper

Jed O. Kaplan

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Juerg Luterbacher

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> Euro-Med2k Nature Geoscience PAGES press release (English, 4 February 2016, PDF)

> Nature Geoscience press release (English, 8 February)

Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen Press Release (German, 4 February 2016, PDF)

Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL (English, 8 February 2016, PDF)

Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL (German, 8 February 2016, PDF)

Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL (French, 8 February 2016, PDF)

Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL (Italian, 8 February 2016, PDF)

ng euro sumtemp

Figure 1: The "Late Antique Little Ice Age" (LALIA) started 536 CE. The temperature drop stands out clearly in the reconstructed summer temperatures (blue shading left). Graphic: Ulf Büntgen.

 

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Figure 2: Cooling and societal change during the Late Antique Little Ice Age. Summer temperatures were reconstructed from tree rings in the Russian Altai and the European Alps. Horizontal bars, shadings and stars refer to major plague outbreaks, rising and falling empires, large-scale human migrations, and political turmoil. Image: Ulf Büntgen. 

ng euro altai tree

Image 1: Studying old trees in the Altai mountains allowed reconstructing Eurasia summer temperatures over the last 2,000 years. Photo: Vladimir S. Myglan.

ng euro altai

Image 2: New tree-ring width measurements from the Russian Altai mountains indicate a drastic cold period 1,500 years ago. Photo: Vladimir S. Myglan.

The Euro-Med2k Working Group focuses on creating spatial reconstructions and modeling past climate in the Europe and the Mediterranean region (including southern Europe, the Middle East and northern Africa) over the last 2,000 years.

It is the successor to the paleo-component of the MedCLIVAR project, a project endorsed by PAGES.

During phase 2, Euro-Med2k aims to compile a wide range of proxy data and substantially expand the EuroMed2k database.

Over the next few months around 70 records will be added, representing different resolutions and covering different age ranges from several centuries to most of the Holocene. The records will cover the area from 25-70°N and 10°W-45°E, with geographical foci on the Iberian Peninsula, Alpine arc, and Fennoscandia. Particular emphasis will be given to so far under-represented marine and terrestrial records of lower resolution to help fill seasonal, temporal, and spatial gaps in the existing network

Ultimately, Euro-Med2k aims to provide a long-term perspective on the modern European climate by performing model-data comparison assessments, and supplementing detection and attribution studies.

More at: http://www.pastglobalchanges.org/ini/wg/euro-med2k/intro

Past Global Changes (PAGES) was established in 1991 to facilitate international research into understanding past changes in the Earth system to improve projections of future climate and environment, and inform strategies for sustainability. It receives funding mainly from the Swiss and US national science foundations. PAGES is a core project of Future Earth.

More at: http://www.pastglobalchanges.org/

Category: Highlights | Journal articles