Climate Patterns and Meteorological Disasters in Medieval Thought.

Date: Wednesday 8 June 2016

Time: 19:00 - 21:30


Reading Museum Service
Town Hall
Blagrave Street
United Kingdom


SPEAKER: Dr Anne Mathers-Lawrence, University of Reading.

ABSTRACT: The history of serious weather forecasting is not usually traced further back than the nineteenth century, but this talk will challenge this view. It will first look at the apparently magical beliefs involved in forecasting natural disasters, before moving on to examine more obviously scientific models of the earth and its climatic zones. Finally, the impact of new astronomical knowledge, and the arrival of Arabic work on how to make detailed weather forecasts, will be outlined. The talk will argue that, by the thirteenth century, expert practitioners were able to make detailed, long-range weather forecasts, calibrated for specified latitudes and dates – but it will not argue that these were accurate!

NOTE: This meeting will be held in the Waterhouse Chamber and NOT the Victoria Hall as previously advertised.  Please use the Clock Tower entrance.

This meeting is part of the Royal Meteorological Society Meetings programme, open to all, from expert to enthusiast, for topical discussions on the latest advances in weather and climate. Non members are welcome to attend these meetings.