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Durham University

Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (IMEMS)

Staff and Governance

Core Staff

The day-to-day running of IMEMS is the responsibility of the Core Executive Committee, comprising the Director and Associate Directors and the Administrator. 

Publication details for Prof. James Baldini

Baldini, J.U.L., McDermott, F. & Fairchild, I.J. (2002). Structure of the 8200-year cold event revealed by a speleothem trace element record. Science 296(5576): 2203-2206.

Author(s) from Durham


Abrupt first-order shifts in strontium and phosphorus concentrations in stalagmite calcite deposited in western Ireland during the 8200-year event (the major cooling episode 8200 years before the
present) are interpreted as responses to a drier climate lasting about 37 years. Both shifts are centered on 8330 80 years before the present, coinciding with a large oxygen isotope anomaly and a change in the calcite petrography. In this very high resolution (monthly) record, antipathetic second-order oscillations in phosphorus and strontium reveal decreased growth rates and increased rainfall seasonality. Growth rate variations within the event reveal a two-pronged structure consistent with recent model simulations.


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We thank two anonymous reviewers for
their constructive reviews. Supported by Enterprise
Ireland grant SC/1999/012/.

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