Aeolian Islands: the Lighthouse of the Tyrrhenian Sea

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Aeolian Islands: The Lighthouse of the Tyrrhenian Sea
Matthew J. Riggs
Shippensburg University

This paper will take a look at the geological features of the Aeolian Islands. This paper will be looking at the age, types, and features of the Aeolian Islands. By using scholarly journals, other internet resources, and the OneNote notebook to better organize and help interpret information. In hopes of helping other geology students get a better understanding for a beautiful geological feature and to answer the question: “Why is this site important?”

Aeolian Islands: The arc of the Tyrrhenian Sea
Italian Design
Italy has always been a staple for beautiful designs. Speaking from an architectural view there is the Roman Colosseum, the Florence Cathedral, and the Pantheon just to name a few. Italy is also known for having some of the top fashion designers, from Giorgio Armani to Gianni and Donatella Versace. It seems as though Italians have an eye for design and creating. Has anyone ever wondered why Italians have this eye and seem constantly inspired? Well, maybe it has to do with all the natural wonders that surround them that are so beautiful. The Seven Sister

The Aeolian Islands are a grouping of seven islands they are known as a volcanic archipelago, which is a chain of volcanic islands. In the case of the Aeolian Islands which are an arc. The seven islands that make up the Aeolian Islands are: Laipari, Stromboli, Vulcano, Salina, Panarea, Filicudi, and Alicudi. The islands lay just off the coast of Sicily in the Tyrrhenian Sea, with Vulcano being the closest to the country. However, the largest of the eight islands is Lipari and Basiluzzo being the smallest and technically not big enough to be considered in the arc. Their name comes from the demigod of wind, Aeolus. The islands have been popular tourist spots in the summer months. People also inhabit these islands; they have received the nickname Eolians.

Lighthouses of Tyrrhenian Sea
Out of all the islands only two are still classified as active volcanoes, Vulcano and Stromboli. However, Panarea, Lipari, Filicudi, and Alicudi are the most ancient volcanoes of the arc. Panarea and Lipari still have thermal springs and fumaroles (opening in crust, which emits steam and gases). In past centuries there were one or two volcanoes eruptions. The reason behind the nickname lighthouse was due to the flashing glares from the volcanoes that would go off roughly every twenty minutes. Eolians Homes

The people of the Aeolian Islands are very passionate about keeping the island’s historical architecture intact. They have gone to such extremes as to not even allowing the building of new residences or companies. People may buy old residences but must restore them instead of demolishing and building new homes. The materials used to build these homes are found throughout the island, these items include: stone, lava, pumice, and tufa. Geologic Age

Geologists have recorded finding rocks on Panarea and Lipari that are between 1 million to 1 million 500 hundred thousand years old. Also on Stromboli there are lavas dating back to 500 thousand years old. The Aeolian Islands emerged over 700 hundred thousand years ago, with Panarea being the first and Stromboli as the last. Rocks of the Islands

The Aeolian Islands being volcanic are most known for their specific rocks found on the islands. Pumice stone has been one of the major rocks found on site. Pumice is created in high pressure, high temperature and then ejected from a volcano. Pumice deposits can be found along the coast of many islands. Another popular rock found on the islands is obsidian. “Obsidian was in huge demand in ancient times when it was used to make sharp utensils” (Davi, 2009). Lipari become the richest island due to its vast amounts of obsidian. Birth of the Seven Sisters

Many scientists believe that the Aeolian Islands were formed over 700 hundred thousand years ago. They began as a...
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