Volcano Seasons
Weather reports from northern Britain, 1783-1786

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Presented here are reports relating to weather from two northern English newspapers, the east-coast Newcastle Courant, and the west-coast Cumberland Pacquet (published in Whitehaven) in 1783-86, a time when the atmosphere was massively polluted by volcanic activity in Iceland. For the most part, reports from south of the River Trent have been ignored, unless they are first-hand accounts from locally-based voyagers. On the other hand, the definition of "relating to weather" is very broad, including not just reports of weather events and trends, but also phenological indicators from nature and agriculture, reports of phenomena in the sky, and human-interest stories vaguely connected with the weather (plus one totally irrelevant but moderately interesting earthquake in 1786). Omitted, however, are the frequent reports of local prices for a range of produce, such as barley and peas- these would be better presented in a spreadsheet, as they already have been for many markets around the world, and I may get round to it some day, eventually. [By the way, in these pages my own occasional comments appear in square brackets.]
N.B. Balloon adventures have had to be excluded, because once the Montgolfier adventure was reported, the making of balloons became an international craze, and scarcely a week passed by in the mid-1780s without reports of exciting or perilous ascents (and it took a very short time indeed for somebody to suggest that a copious supply of hot air could be obtained from the Houses of Parliament).