THE CHRONICLE OF THE CATASTROPHE
Let us cast our minds back, then, to the middle of the 16th century BC. Written documents, which could tell us exactly what happened, do not exist.
Aiew Kameni was formed from, the material spewed oul during eruptions of the volcano in Ihe modern period The black masses of lava give us some idea of what the whole area must haue looked like after Ihe terrible eruption of 1500 HC.
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Earthquakes were always a common occurrence in the region. One especially cata-strophic earthquake must have triggered the volcano, and it awoke. The houses, some with two storeys and some with three, were partially destroyed. Most of the residents abandoned the island in panic, and it seems that, forewarned by some worrying sign, they did not return.
They took whatever valuables they had with them: the dig at Akrotiri has unearthed no objects of any worth, no jewels, seals or other valuables, no skeletons of humans or animals, apart from that of a pig.