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Krakatau, 27 August 1883 27 August 2009

Posted by admin in anniversaries, eruptions, Indonesia, Krakatau, volcanological works.
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'View of Krakatoa during the earlier stage of the eruption. From a photograph taken on Sunday the 27th of May, 1883' - plate I from The Eruption of Krakatoa and Subsequent Phenomena (London, 1888)

It was 126 years ago today, on 27 August 1883, that the most recent large-scale eruption of Krakatau (or Krakatoa, if you prefer) reached its final cataclysmic stage. An appropriate day, then, to draw the attention of interested readers to the fact that possibly the most detailed contemporary scientific study of the eruption, the Royal Society’s 500-page report on The Eruption of Krakatoa and Subsequent Phenomena (1888), is freely available to download from the Internet Archive.

Fgures 2 and 3 from The Eruption of Krakatoa and Subsequent Phenomena (London, 1888)

The book has been fully digitized by Google, but it is a curious fact that Google chooses not to make the full text of this out-of-copyright publication available via Google Books. It is, however, freely available to read and download (along with many other texts that Google has digitized but has seemingly decided to keep to itself) through its inclusion in the Internet Archive.

The Eruption of Krakatoa and Subsequent Phenomena can be accessed via this page at the Internet Archive. The PDF of the entire book (27.2 MB) cannot be found via the ‘Google.com’ link given on that page, but can be downloaded through this direct link.

The Volcanism Blog


1. Dave Schumaker - 27 August 2009

I was able to download the PDF from Google Books with the link you provided.

2. admin - 27 August 2009

Which link do you mean? The link to Google Books themselves, or the direct link to the PDF at the Internet Archive? As far as I can see the PDF is available through the latter but not the former.

3. Steve Malek - 27 August 2009

The links from Internet Archve pages that are supposed to go to the PDF at Google often don’t, going instead to pages that make it look as if no PDF is available for a particular book (even though it actually is, it’s just that Google don’t provide a download facility for it). This is is just one example. Google’s behavior in this respect has been the cause of some complaint in the IA forums.

To get the full range of download options for any text available through the Internet Archive, click on the link marked ‘All files: HTTP’ on the left. If there is a PDF, it will be listed there.

4. crosspatch - 29 August 2009

Too bad nobody was around to document the eruption in AD 535.

5. crosspatch - 29 August 2009

After reading this account of the aftermath of the 535 eruption, I doubt our society could survive a repeat. Imagine snow and frost all 12 months of the year in the Northern Plains and Canada (not to mention the Steppes of Eurasia).

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