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Authors: Sbeinati, M. R.*
Darawcheh, R.*
Mouty, M.*
Title: The historical earthquakes of Syria: an analysis of large and moderate earthquakes from 1365 B.C. to 1900 A.D.
Issue Date: 2005
Series/Report no.: 48 (3)
Keywords: historical earthquakes
historical sources
seismic hazards
Dead Sea fault system
Eastern Mediterranean
Abstract: The historical sources of large and moderate earthquakes, earthquake catalogues and monographs exist in many depositories in Syria and European centers. They have been studied, and the detailed review and analysis resulted in a catalogue with 181 historical earthquakes from 1365 B.C. to 1900 A.D. Numerous original documents in Arabic, Latin, Byzantine and Assyrian allowed us to identify seismic events not mentioned in previous works. In particular, detailed descriptions of damage in Arabic sources provided quantitative information necessary to re-evaluate past seismic events. These large earthquakes (I0>VIII) caused considerable damage in cities, towns and villages located along the northern section of the Dead Sea fault system. Fewer large events also occurred along the Palmyra, Ar-Rassafeh and the Euphrates faults in Eastern Syria. Descriptions in original sources document foreshocks, aftershocks, fault ruptures, liquefaction, landslides, tsunamis, fires and other damages. We present here an updated historical catalogue of 181 historical earthquakes distributed in 4 categories regarding the originality and other considerations, we also present a table of the parametric catalogue of 36 historical earthquakes (table I) and a table of the complete list of all historical earthquakes (181 events) with the affected locality names and parameters of information quality and completeness (table II) using methods already applied in other regions (Italy, England, Iran, Russia) with a completeness test using EMS-92. This test suggests that the catalogue is relatively complete for magnitudes >6.5. This catalogue may contribute to a comprehensive and unified parametric earthquake catalogue and to a realistic assessment of seismic hazards in Syria and surrounding regions.
Appears in Collections:05.02.02. Seismological data
04.06.05. Historical seismology
Annals of Geophysics

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