Climate Change Deniers, Beware Of The Speaking Stones

A “hunger stone” exposed by the low level of water in the Elbe river is seen in Decin, Czech Republic, on Thursday. The low level of water caused by the recent drought has exposed the stones on the river bed. Petr David Josek/AP

Thanks to National Public Radio (USA) for this:

Drought In Central Europe Reveals Cautionary ‘Hunger Stones’ In Czech River

ap_18235426463887_custom-7a1b9400512fdb6edfb48925e9b2ab2c08981692-s1400-c85.jpg

People visit a famous “hunger stone” exposed by the low level of water in the Elbe river in Decin, Czech Republic, on Thursday. Petr David Josek/AP

A lengthy drought in Europe has exposed carved boulders, known as “hunger stones,” that have been used for centuries to commemorate historic droughts — and warn of their consequences.

The Associated Press reports that hunger stones are newly visible in the Elbe River, which begins in the Czech Republic and flows through Germany.

“Over a dozen of the hunger stones, chosen to record low water levels, can now be seen in and near the northern Czech town of Decin near the German border,” the AP writes.

One of the stones on the banks of the Elbe is carved with the words “Wenn du mich seihst, dann weine“: “If you see me, weep.”

A team of Czech researchers described that stone in detail in a 2013 paper about the history of droughts in Czech lands.

The stone is also chiseled with “the years of hardship and the initials of authors lost to history,” the researchers wrote:

“It expressed that drought had brought a bad harvest, lack of food, high prices and hunger for poor people. Before 1900, the following droughts are commemorated on the stone: 1417, 1616, 1707, 1746, 1790, 1800, 1811, 1830, 1842, 1868, 1892, and 1893.”

That particular stone is now a bit of a tourist attraction; it’s one of the oldest hydrological landmarks in central Europe. Also, because of a dam on a tributary of the Elbe, it’s seen more often now than it used to be, according to a Decin tourist site — although the current river levels are still exceptional…

Read the whole story here.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s