Parts of Italian volcano ‘stretched nearly to breaking point’, study finds
Campi Flegrei (Phlegraean Fields) near Naples is now in ‘extremely dangerous’ state, say academic experts
This could well happen. The Temple of Serapis (just by the right of that quay in the middle just to the left of that picture) was, after all, where:
A band of borings or Gastrochaenolites left by marine Lithophaga bivalve molluscs on three standing marble columns indicated that these columns had remained upright over centuries while the site sank below sea level, then re-emerged. This puzzling feature was the subject of debate in early geology, and eventually led to the identification of bradyseism in the area, showing that the Earth’s crust could be subject to gradual movement without destructive earthquakes.
And just out of picture to the top right is Monte Nuovo (and where we lived in the 70s), the first eruption recorded in modern times:
Vesuvius wiped Pompeii off the map almost two millennia ago, while the vast volcanic Campi Flegrei area near Naples last spewed lava, ashes and rocks in 1538.
To the right and behind us would be Solfatara, a big mud plain bubbling HS2. And there in the middle distance is the house the parentals lived in when Pops was Commodore of Naples (yes, Nelson’s old job, but boy was he pissed that the Admiral had moved up from Malta and taken the house that used to go with the job).
It can seem less dangerous than it is because, instead of growing into a traditional mountain, the volcano has the shape of a gentle depression 7.5-8.5 miles (12-14km) across. A resurgence of activity in the early 1980s led to the evacuation of 40,000 inhabitants, but the volcano has been relatively quiet since then.
Indeed, at exactly that time.
“We’re not saying there will be an eruption, we are saying that the conditions for an eruption are more favourable,” Christopher Kilburn from University College London told AFP.
Which is exactly what the vulcanologist from UCL said in the mid-1980s too.
Just to add to the fun, out in that bay you often enough see cooked, even burnt, fish floating on the surface. Fumaroles – bits where the crust is thin ehough that the heat comes up into the water.
It’s a lovely, lovely, gorgeous, area. That stretch from the middle distance out to that flat topped hill is where Roman Emperors had summer places (Baia, where Nero’s Mum got done in). See it while you can say I.
Also, top right hand corner is the beginnings of Arco Felice, where Sophia Loren comes from. And yes, the genetics do seem to be local. I’ve seen at least one 18 year old seeming copy there in recent years.