Under the North Sea are the lost islands that were hit by the powerful Storegg tsunami about 8 million years ago. New research proves that natural elements played a key role in the development of prehistoric Britain. Once the UK and Norway were connected by an ancient plain known as Doggerland. Around 6200 BC, it was hit by the devastating Storegg mega tsunami that flooded much of the region.
The researchers believe that the tsunami could have been caused by the underwater collapse of part of Norway's continental shelf about 800 kilometers to the north. For a long time, science was convinced that the tsunami waves completely destroyed Doggerland.
However, the recovered samples of underwater sediments raised on the ship during a scientific expedition to the North Sea, showed a different development of events. Part of ancient Doggerland not only survived the tsunami, but also remained inhabited by humans in the Stone Age for several millennia. An archaeologist at the University of Bradford believes that the tsunami was so powerful that it left no chance of survival. However, for Doggerland, it did not mean the end of an era.
The non-submerged region was exposed by the protruding northern ice cap at the end of the last ice age, about 12 thousand years ago. And 10 thousand years before that, the territory was a magnificent landscape with lakes, swamps, forests.
Perhaps it was the richest area in flora and fauna in Europe during the Mesolithic period. Analysis of cores from underwater sediments showed that most of Doggerland was flooded much later than the tsunami. And the reason for this was the rise in sea level that occurred due to climate warming. By the time Storegg emerged, most of the archipelago was already hidden under water. Sample studies also proved that the land above the water remained dry and habitable long after the tsunami.
This theory was confirmed by computer simulations, which showed that other isolated islands located nearby survived. They all united into a single archipelago, which was given the name Dogger. For people, they could be more comfortable to live in.
The island territories that survived under water need further study. If only because they may contain early evidence of the introduction of agricultural technologies in Britain, which later spread to Europe. It is possible that it was in these coastal areas that the first contacts with agriculture and farmers originated.