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Volume 21 (1) - 1998


Cinematica attuale, comportamento sismico e sismologia storica della faglia di Monte Sant’Angelo (Gargano, Italia): la possibile rottura superficiale del “leggenadario” terremoto del 493 d.C. – Actual kinematics, seismic behaviour and historical seismology of the Monte Sant’Angelo fault (Gargano, Italy): the possible surface rupture of the “legendary” earthquake of the 493 A.D.

Pages 155-156


Tectonic analysis is a fundamental tool to understand kinematics and behaviour of active faults, and to assess of the seismic risk of an area. Structural-geological and rnorphotectonic analysis of the Monte Sant’Angelo fault clearly indicate it to be active, Detailed measurements of the morphology of the mountain slope and of the cumulative scarp allowed to kineraatically characterize this fault with a vertical slip rate of 0,7 ± 0,2 mm/yr and a right-lateral slip-rate of 1 ± 0,2 mm/yr. Evidence of cumulated coseisrnic surface ruptures have been recognized along the main fault trace, and it was even possible to estimate a maximum magnitude of M = 6,9 and a recurrence time of 1860 ± 460 years for such earthquakes. Historically, similar earthquakes are not documented on this fault, and the area is in fact classified with a maximum felt intensity of VII-VIII MCS. Nonetheless, a strong earthquake at Monte Sant’Angelo is described in one of the most important medieval sacred legends, and traditionally dated around the 5* century A.D. By combining tectonic, archeological arid historical data, the most recent of the observed faulting events could be identified as the possible result of the earthquake reported in that legend. The main results of this study are therefore; 1) identification of a strong Italian earthquake (6

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