1783 Messina earthquake, Sicily, illustration

1783 Messina earthquake, Sicily, illustration

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Credit: COLLECTION ABECASIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: 1783 Messina earthquake, Sicily. 1854 illustration showing damage caused to the city of Messina, Sicily, by the earthquakes of 1783. In 1783 a series of five strong earthquakes hit the region of Calabria in southern Italy. They occurred over a period of nearly two months and are estimated to have had magnitudes of 5.9 or greater. Their epicentres formed a clear alignment extending nearly 100 km from the Straits of Messina to about 18 km SSW of Catanzaro. The first, on 5th February 1783, destroyed the harbour walls and caused widespread death and destruction in Messina.

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