Centuries-old Tsunami Warnings Carved in Stone

Posted on Friday, April 8th, 02011 by Austin Brown
link Categories: Long Term Thinking, Technology, The Big Here   chat 0 Comments

“High dwellings are the peace and harmony of our descendants,” the stone slab reads. “Remember the calamity of the great tsunamis. Do not build any homes below this point.”

Jay Alabaster of the AP reports that hundreds of stone markers dot the coastlines of Japan. The oldest of these markers appears to be near 600 years old.

They carry warnings of tsunamis past and instruct readers to get to high ground after earthquakes. Some are even placed at high-water marks to indicate the extent of particular tsunami events.

The village of Aneyoshi grew up as a collection of homes built uphill of some of the markers specifically to be safe. Residents are raised knowing of the stones and their meaning.

“Everybody here knows about the markers. We studied them in school,” said Yuto Kimura, 12, who guided a recent visitor to one near his home. “When the tsunami came, my mom got me from school and then the whole village climbed to higher ground.”

There are those who can recall the 1960 tsunami caused by an earthquake in Chile, but the stone markers form a deeper cultural memory, representing many generations of life in a disaster-prone area and lessons learned from it. “Crude” though they may be, perhaps they provide a useful example for memorializing the recent disaster and for durably preserving its lessons for future generations.

  • Austin_B

    I love the idea of these as functional monuments. It brings to mind the Cisterns scattered around San Francisco – http://blog.longnow.org/2007/0… – They were built shortly after the 1906 earthquake and resulting fire to provide water for the next big quake.

    If only they included, like these stones, some kind of inscribed warning or instructions. They could then both memorialize the past and transmit it's lessons (with – crucially – material assistance) to the future.

  • truthersue

    Maybe people will leave a few of these around the country inscribed with the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution so future generations will know what we lost.

  • Steve

    Very nice comment…props!

  • Steve

    Posted this on FBook

  • Locations and images of many of these markers are shown here:
    http://www.kasen.net/ishibumi/tsunamimap.htm

  • Dmiller

    What will we write on our tablets and leave for tomorrow's children?

  • Nice warning from history

  • Yukawa

    NY Times decides to pick up story a week later. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04

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  • yEshUA ImmAnUEl * ben-‘Adam

    John 14:26
    But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

  • yEshUA ImmAnUEl * ben-‘Adam

    *** The Year of the Lord ***
    2016-2017 (Hebrew year 5777)
    The year 5777 in Jewish calendar.
    5+7+7+7= 26
    … 26 is the numerical value of one of God’s holy names (YHWH) where the Hebrew letters Yud (Y) = 10, Heh(H) = 5, Vav(W) = 6 and Heh(H) = 5 add up to 26.
    ———————————
    Luke 4:
    Jesus stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
    18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
    He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
    to set the oppressed free,
    19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
    20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

  • y3shuA imMANu3l

    *** The Year of the Lord ***
    2016-2017 (Hebrew year 5777)
    The year 5777 in Jewish calendar.
    5+7+7+7= 26
    … 26 is the numerical value of one of God’s holy names (YHWH) where the Hebrew letters Yud (Y) = 10, Heh(H) = 5, Vav(W) = 6 and Heh(H) = 5 add up to 26.
    ———————————
    Luke 4:
    Jesus stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
    18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
    because he has anointed me
    to proclaim good news to the poor.
    He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
    and recovery of sight for the blind,
    to set the oppressed free,
    19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
    20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. 21 He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

  • y3shuA imMANu3l

    John 14:26
    But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.


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