Comet Collision 'The Source of Ancient Myths'

Article excerpt

A MASSIVE comet crashed into the Earth only a few thousand years ago, raining fireballs in its wake and giving rise to many of the myths of early civilisations, scientists said yesterday.

Ancient writings, including prophecies from the Book of Revelation in the Bible, appear to describe cataclysmic events involving objects falling from the sky and researchers have uncovered scientific evidence that something catastrophic occurred more than 4,000 years ago which caused a drastic change in the climate.

Studies of the tree-rings in Irish Oaks at Queen's University, Belfast, have revealed that around 2,354-2,345 BC there was a sudden downturn in the climate. In Northern Syria, archaeologists have discovered evidence of a catastrophic environmental event at about the same time. Their analysis reveals evidence not only of widespread destruction, but the disintegration of mud-brick buildings by what was described as a "blast from the sky". There was a simultaneous collapse of Bronze Age civilisations. Bill Napier, an astronomer at Armagh Observatory, and Victor Clube, from Oxford and Armagh Universities, have been investigating the evidence that a major comet landed in the third millennium BC. Writing in Frontiers, the bi-annual magazine of the Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council, Mr Napier suggests that Comet Encke, first observed in 1786, might be a remnant of the object along with its associated stream of meteors, called the Taurids. …