Master of Science Dissartation

1.5 ka BP episode in the light of selected palaeoclimatic data in Central Europe



Supervising institution:


Agata Han

Krzysztof Markowicz, Fabian Welc

Uniwersyteckie Centrum Badań nad Środowiskiem Przyrodniczym i Zrównoważonym Rozwojem


This master's thesis attempts to connect with the 6th-century climate change in Central Europe, based on a wide spectrum of paleoclimatic data. This work is part of palaeoclimatological research, which shows that climate variability (especially the frequency of extreme events) has always had a huge impact on humanity. This thesis aims to present the scope of climate change in Central Europe in the 6th century and to try to identify its causes thanks to the correlation of geological data from lake cores with palaeoclimatic data from Central Europe.
Concerning the 1.5 ka BP climate anomaly, the biggest problem is the lack of syntheses in regional terms, especially for the area of ​​Central Europe. To fill this gap, the available data on palaeoclimatic and geoarchaeological anomalies of 1.5 ka BP were analyzed. The research material is the cores obtained from the sediments of Lake Radomno, which were subjected to geochemical and microstructural analysis. The results of these studies were compared with the results of re-analysis of records contained in palaeoclimatic data sets (Last Millennium Reanalysis (LMR) Project Global Climate Reconstructions Version 2 and PAGES2k Global 2,000 Year Multiproxy Database) for the last 2000 years.
The study of lake cores showed that in the Masurian Lake District during the 1.5 ka BP episode, a colder and wetter climatic phase occurred, corresponding to the global cooling episode. The research confirms the thesis that in the mid-6th century, a cold and wet episode took place in the Masurian Lake District. There is also no doubt that, from the perspective of the collected data, this was a climatic event unheard of in previous periods.
The data analysis based on the results of the climate re-analysis also showed that there was a climate anomaly at that time. The data indicate a dry and cool period of several years. However, the amplitude of the temperature drop is small and reaches approx. 0.3 oC, as is the amplitude of precipitation, which is approx. 10 mm / year.
All the collected and processed data confirm that the 1.5 ka BP episode also occurred in the area of ​​Warmia and Mazury, but for a comprehensive and more precise description of the climate phenomena that took place then, more data is needed from both palaeoclimatic databases and research allowing to obtain further proxy data. From the perspective of the collected data, it is visible that the climatic event defined as the 1.5 ka BP anomaly was an exceptional phenomenon in the last 2000 years.