Archaeological evidence of a destructive earthquake in Patras, Greece

S. C. Stiros, S. I. Pytharouli

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Oriented collapse of columns, large-scale destruction debris and temporary abandonment of the area deduced from an archaeological excavation provide evidence for a major (intensity IX) earthquake in Patras, Greece. This, and possibly a cluster of other earthquakes, can be derived from archaeological data. These earthquakes are not included in the historical seismicity catalogues, but can be used to put constraints to the seismic risk of this city. Patras was affected by a cluster of poorly documented earthquakes between 1714 and 1806. The city seems to be exposed to risks of progressive reactivation of a major strike-slip fault. A magnitude 6.4 earthquake in 2008 has been related to it. This fault has also been associated with a total of four events in the last 20 years, a situation reminiscent of the seismic hazard at the western edge of the North Anatolian Fault.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)687-693
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Seismology
Issue number3
Early online date18 May 2014
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2014


  • earthquake
  • seismic hazard
  • archaeological evidence
  • risk


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