there is another Europe under the sea and not long ago there were humans living there

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8,000 years ago, what we now call the North Sea was an almost endless series of calm and relatively fertile plains. That land connected the British Isles with present-day Denmark, the Netherlands, and part of Atlantic France. It was more than a land bridge; it was the promise of a completely different history of the continent. A promise that lasted until the last ice age ended up flooding everything what we now know as Doggerland.


120 meters. Geologists calculate that, at the end of the last ice age, before the glaciers retreated, the sea level had dropped 120 meters. This meant that the physiognomy of the coasts of the whole world was very different from the current one: one of the places where this was especially striking was in the lowlands of Europe.

A world very similar, but very different. those lands, in terms of landscape, fauna and flora, were a strange mixture of northern Europe and Great Britain. A fertile and flat space dotted with hills; a broken coast, exposed to the Atlantic currents: and a lot of water: lakes, lagoons and rivers.

The latter is especially striking because what we know today as the Thames or the Seine ended up flowing into a much longer Rhine that would die in the waters of the Atlantic through an arm of the sea that would later become the English Channel. The world was very similar to this, of course: it was “only” 18,000 years ago, but at the same time it is radically different.

doggerland

The civilization that could have been and was not. There are really complete maps showing the enormous dimensions of Doggerland. However, the most interesting thing is what you don’t see on the maps: if it had stayed above the water, the story would have been very different.

To get started, why that one “terrain, flat, fertile and suitable for agriculture, could have sustained a small civilization whose language and culture would have had an important influence on the rest of the continent”. To finish, because the geopolitics of northern Europe would have been very different. However, the end of the ice age ended up provoking that these populations mixed with those of the south and Great Britain, which had had enormous contact with the continent, was left isolated.

The Doggerlands of the Future. This story is fascinating because we have the idea that the Earth is much more stable than it actually is. The constant climatic changes of the Earth have had a dramatic impact on its appearance: the last great ice age is already being suffered by humans… the next change, who knows? where will it take us?

Image | NextNature

8,000 years ago, what we now call the North Sea was an almost endless series of calm and relatively fertile…

8,000 years ago, what we now call the North Sea was an almost endless series of calm and relatively fertile…

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