A history of British seismology

Musson, R.M.W.. 2013 A history of British seismology. Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering, 11 (3). 715-861.

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The work of John Milne, the centenary of whose death is marked in 2013, has had a large impact in the development in global seismology. On his return from Japan to England in 1895, he established for the first time a global earthquake recording network, centred on his observatory at Shide, Isle of Wight. His composite bulletins, the “Shide Circulars” developed, in the twentieth century, into the world earthquake bulletins of the International Seismological Summary and eventually the International Seismological Centre, which continues to publish the definitive earthquake parameters of world earthquakes on a monthly basis. In fact, seismology has a long tradition in Britain, stretching back to early investigations by members of the Royal Society after 1660. Investigations in Scotland in the early 1840s led to a number of firsts, including the first network of instruments, the first seismic bulletin, and indeed, the first use of the word “seismometer”, from which words like “seismology” are a back-formation. This paper will present a chronological survey of the development of seismology in the British Isles, from the first written observations of local earthquakes in the seventh century, and the first theoretical writing on earthquakes in the twelfth century, up to the monitoring of earthquakes in Britain in the present day.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISSN: 1570-761X
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and the source are credited.
Date made live: 20 Aug 2013 15:31 +0 (UTC)

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