Letter | Published:

British Earthquakes

Nature volume 23, page 170 | Download Citation



MAY I ask leave to offer a few remarks on the leading article on British Earthquakes which appeared in NATURE, vol. xxiii. p. 117. The author brings out very strongly the apparent connection between great lines of jointing or faulting and earthquake movements, and points out the great fault which traverses Scotland from sea to sea as a case in point. Now I had this same question before the British Association this year, and exhibited a map illustrative thereof. I had further, following up a theory submitted by me to the Royal Irish Academy, on the Correlation of Coast-Line Directions, and published by that body, drawn up on a Geikie's Geological Map of Scotland certain of those correlated lines, and on a smaller map of the British Isles had indicated both the lines in question and the localities wherein earthquakes have been noticed in later times, more essentially since 1860. One of those lines crosses the district about Comrie, and at the moment (August, 1880) could hardly be pointed out as in any notable way supporting the connection sought to be established between coast-line directions and earthquake localities. But the recent earthquakes in the north of Ireland and in Scotland go far to do this, as the direction shown by me both agrees with the great fault mentioned by the author of the paper on British Earthquakes in direction, and also fairly shows the direction of the earthquake band or zone, which apparently extends from Londonderry across Scotland. This direction is exactly at 40° with the coast-line direction between Carnsore Point and Wicklow Head, as shown on the accompanying map.

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  1. Royal College of Sciences, Dublin, December 14

    • J. P. O'REILLY


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