The Hekla eruption of AD 1222
Irish History From The Annals




In AD 1222 the fallout from the eruption of the Icelandic volcano Hekla was recorded in the Annals of the Four Masters.

Hekla is a volcano in southern Iceland that has erupted more than 20 times since the ninth century. An eruption of Hekla in the year AD 1222 appears to have been recorded in the Annals of the Four Masters. The Annals record that following heavy rain in east Galway and south Roscommon cattle that ate grass became ill as did the people who drank their milk. The illness may have been caused by ash from Hekla drifting over Ireland where it was washed to earth by heavy rain showers. Ash falls can be poisonous to livestock and result in diseases such as hypocalcaemia, and fluorosis as well intestinal damage, and other metabolic disorders.

A heavy and awful shower fell on a part of Connaught, namely, on Hy-Many, Sodan, in Hy-Diarmada, and other districts, from which arose a murrain rain and dreadful distemper among the cattle of the aforesaid territories, after they had eaten of the grass moistened by this shower, and the milk of these cattle produced a variety of inward maladies in the people who used it. It was no wonder that these ominous signs should appear this year in Connaught, for great was the evil and affliction which they suffered in this year, viz., the death of Cathal Crovderg, son of Turlough More O'Conor, King of Connaught...

 
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