EGU General Assembly 2020
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The 1834 Ermellek earthquake effects and the architecture of migration after war in Baroque times

Maria Bostenaru Dan
Maria Bostenaru Dan
  • Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism, Faculty of Urbanism, Department of Urban and Landscape Design, Bucharest, Romania

1712 Swabian immigration started to Sathmar county on today's Romania territory. This followed closing the Sathmar peace 1711 after a war which left lands empty without work force. The colonists came from Upper Swabia, which is today Baden-Württemberg in Germany. The immigration took about one century. The colonists came by means of ships called Ulmer Schachtel from Ulm on the Danube, for which reason these are the first Danube Swabians. The later waves of colonists were brought by Emperor Maria Theresia to further areas in Banat and Hungary. Within a DOMUS scholarship in the home country, the author investigated how patterns of architecture were brought by the migrants from their old to their new home, including church and vernacular architecture. The colonists came from an area where much of the land belonged to monasteries, and following the end of the 30 years war an intense construction activity started, in Baroque style, which led to what is today the Upper Swabian Baroque Street. Investigation of Zsiros assessed the magnitude of the 1834 Érmellék earthquake, which affected this area, by effects on vernacular architecture. But also churches displayed earthquake damage, as research of Julia Bara shows, including destruction of towers and vaults. Churches were built by foreign architects such as Josef Bittheuser from Würzburg and Franz Sebastian Rosenstingl from Vienna. The churches of the later in Vienna displayed damages with time as well. Within the research of the author these damages were mapped and connected to patters of earthquake safe construction in the home country, which is also affected by moderate earthquakes. Particularly in case of vernacular architecture, the houses of the colonists are related to other typologies of Danube Swabians but not to those which can be observed in the houses conserved in village museums, from which some date from before the migration. This can be explained by their destruction. The oldest identified one is one of the ancestors of the author, dated by genealogy data to be built around 1840. The in situ conserved museum house is of a more recent date. The vernacular housing typology was investigated employing the GEM taxonomy based on the World Housing Encyclopedia questionnaire. Relevant for the session is how migration patterns result in architectural shape patterns, for which the author also participated in building a society game. Migration has been mapped by means of story maps as well, but also using Gephi network analysis. The effects of the anthropic hazard of war on letting large amounts of population move (migration) are also relevant for the session.

How to cite: Bostenaru Dan, M.: The 1834 Ermellek earthquake effects and the architecture of migration after war in Baroque times, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-6825,, 2020

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Presentation version 4 – uploaded on 28 May 2020 , no comments
Added envisaged digital humanities (art history/image but also mapping) tools to the methodology
Presentation version 3 – uploaded on 21 May 2020
Included findings according to the comments and some more.
  • CC1: architecture, Magdalena Bostenaru, 21 May 2020

    I see that in this updated version there are more humanities contributions: reference to photography of disasters, not only to books on history (of architecture) as the previous references on earthquake damages. Does this require an art historian qualification or can it be done along with architecture history by architects?

    • AC1: historic photography research, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 22 May 2020

      To be honest, I don't know the answer. I was thinking to apply to Domus to research 19th century catastrophe photography, but I was not sure it falls into my area of expertise. Also, I could not find any photography of this earthquake.

      But there are some methods I am thinking to learn about, which have to do with digitising images. An example for this are projects of Getty which go beyond the digital humanities centres where I researched catastrophe photography not only at the Canadian Centre for Architecture but also during my postdoc in Rome. In Los Angeles also a comprehensive seminar was held few years ago, which includes besides of methods to deal with images (however, I recommend looking also to Kevin Lynch's method to analyse them) also methods for mapping etc. A part of these were also presented in the edX course on Digital Humanities (from Harvard). "Beyond the Digital Slide" was one of the Digital Art History awarded grants by Getty (a complete list is here but not all are so well documented, although I would be particularly interested in the ones in Venice, which now wants to develop in a centre for dealing with climate change and floods. Thinking of "Visualising Venice" I must turn back to the mapping issue mentioned above, namely 1960s maps, as innovation were not only the derivé and Lynch's image of the city, but also Caniggia and Muratori, the maps of whom I also consulted in Rome, along with Roma interrota, which built on Nolli's plan which was the first innovation, but in the 18th century. Maybe it would be a possible continuation.

Presentation version 2 – uploaded on 05 May 2020
Version description: I've removed images on the origin place, I've elaborated the methodology (I received also comments in private and[...]
  • CC1: vernacular culture, Magdalena Bostenaru, 07 May 2020

    I think you missed to say the name of the book on the villages around in your comment. Is this what you build your database on?

    • AC1: book, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 07 May 2020

      Thank you for pointing this out. Obviously I forgot that only text only links are accepted, no HTML.

      The books is Samu Borovsky: Magyarország vármegyei és városai.

      I intend to do a database on which damages were to each church, then classify them according to the 28 models of collapse of Sergio Lagomarsino. Unfortunately the simplified morphogenesis drawings are possible only for those which have photos.

  • CC2: adaptation to nature, Magdalena Bostenaru, 07 May 2020

    It is nice that the presentation has been updated on the vernacular part. I saw already from the first comments that there has been adaptation, also to wine as a geoproduct. How is this in the buildings?

    • AC2: the village of 1000 wine cellars, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 07 May 2020

      This conference is indeed full of surprises. I learned a lot in the geoheritage session on geoproducts, and for this natural area apart of beauty celebrated through the mentioned festivals, wine is a product. In one village in the area a recently discovered heritage in frame of a complex project are the half-underground heritage of wine cellars (and this connects to what I've learned in the COST actions in geosciences session)

      I am wondering if the wine is very different of Tokaj since geographically it is close.

      I hope to get some funding again and do some research in this area.

      • CC3: farming buildings, Magdalena Bostenaru, 07 May 2020

        It is very interesting the article by the researchers from Oradea. I do not remember those buildings. When living there, I was small, and not interested on wine.

        But looking to them, I think they replace the auxiliary buildings seen in the presentation for the Sathmar Swabians. I also think judging from the size of the gates, that carriages were also entering, but I might be wrong.

        • AC3: age, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 07 May 2020

          And it looks like the oldest wine cellar is from 1807, so from before the earthquake, which might give an impression on the houses.

          I still have to study those plans from the museum's publication.

  • CC4: Comment on EGU2020-6825, Elena Petrova, 07 May 2020

    Thank you, Maria, it is a very interesting presentation indeed. I like such sort of historical research. As for me, I was very impressed by German settlements in Transylvania. Are all of these Swabian houses used as museums or are some of them dwelling houses?

    • AC4: German settlements and geoproducts, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 08 May 2020

      Thank you for your question.

      Well, we have two main waves of German settlements in Transylvania. The first were the Transylvanian Saxons, who came during the Middle Ages to protect the frontiers on the mountains. These were citizens of cities and built also the fortified churches from which some are UNESCO heritage and thus a better known heritage. Unfortunately the major part of Transylvanian Saxons left, and thus there is a struggle to keep this heritage. From a restoration point of view, there are several foundations involved, including the one under the auspices of Prince Charles. But the aim is to have used houses, not museums. The Transylvanian Saxon houses yes, have a specific architecture. One such fortified church, in Dealu Frumos (Schönberg) is now the Centre for Vernacular Architecture of our university. Regarding seismic risk, these are located close to Vrancea seismic zone, the source of major earthquakes in Romania. When I was in Karlsruhe there was a lecture on how the towers of the fortified churches adapted to the distance to it, as local seismic culture, by the earthquake engineer who attended the event I talk about in the other presentation. So we get back to the issue of towers discussed in the initial presentation.

      Then, as written in this paper, the Swabians came, after 1700. I was asked in private indeed after the presentation what frontier did they come to protect. Well, at that time there was no frontier (now it is, this is why I wrote on cross border landscape). They came rather in frame of Counterreformation at that time, to increase Catholic population. The Transylvanian Saxons are evangelic, the Swabians are Catholic. Catholics are more easily assimilated. For example in Câmpulung on the other side of the mountains there were catholic Saxons who got assimilated by the Romanian population. The Swabians were assimilated by the Hungarian population. For this reason, at least the Sathmar Swabians, did not leave the country (also because they did not speak German). The Banat Swabians however did. So yes, there is a migration in the other sense today, and this is far more researched. Also when I had a lecture last year on this topic at the house of the German minority in Bucharest, it was a source of joy showing the architecture of the Swabians since that of the Saxons is better known. It was sheduled to have another presentation on architecture of Banat Swabians. There is for example a Banat Swaban village which is circular and very interesting. But there is also mountain and plain architecture of more representative buildings which is interesting, for example the resort architecture. In Sathmar, apart of the churches and the castles, there are mainly vernacular houses of which not so many are traditional, but there are some in every village. There are efforts to save them through conservation, but not as museum, by finding a function. For example in the house of the ancestors there will be the offices of the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania and an exhibition space. The houses I read about in Valea Ierului I am not sure, but I think they are further housing. I also came in contact with a German journalist with Sathmar origins looking to save the last traditional house in Tiream and he has a concept of agrotourism, including the additional buildings, after Italian model. For this also the kitchen is important, and also I am working on cooking the recipes I know from my grandmother. You can read more in German about the project here Maybe I will integrated the kitchen blog in my own project website and help so. Right now I am putting these recipes on, and they are only image recipes. I also have a wave which I cooked in 2005, when waiting for the scholarship in Italy, they are all saved as image, but wanted to upload the writing later. Later I looked in different cooking books and found out that some of them are really specific for Sathmar. In the context of the EGU it is interesting, as in the geoheritage session I saw a lot of contributions on geofood/geoproducts.

      • AC5: socially distanced - cooking, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 08 May 2020

        Today just on the last day of the conference and before the session my essay on how to remember local food in the EGU conference places have been published

        Actually it is discussed if the influence of the Swabians is from Upper Swabia or Austria, in both vernacular construction but also in the kitchen. Some of their food is Viennaise.

Presentation version 1 – uploaded on 01 Apr 2020
  • CC1: The Érmellék region, Magdalena Bostenaru, 02 Apr 2020

    This is a very interesting article, many thanks for sharing. I have lived in the Érmellék region as a child until the age of 11. I did not know that it was seismic region and actually thought it is a better place for living than Bucharest.

    I see that Valea lui Mihai (Érmihályfalva in Hungarian) is in the region of river Ér, where the earthquake was (in its valley). I lived in Andrid (Érendréd in Hungarian) and recall that there was a huge hole in the ground, used later as a water reservoir, which might have been generated in the earthquake. It would have been nice to have some photos of these localities as well. When I was a child, photo cameras were not so spread, we did photos only at the professional photographer.

    • AC1: Reply to CC1, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 02 Apr 2020

      I recall Andrid from my childhood, too, when I was in a visit to a family there, and even more Valea lui Mihai, where I was recently, but unfortunately took no photos.

      When I was in the museum in Petrești I saw a map of the cultural route of Sathmar Swabians and Andrid was mentioned. It was mentioned for a rich heritage in storcks. From what I read, Valea lui Mihai has a rich heritage in acacia trees. The festivals of the villages are like this: acacia festival in Valea lui Mihai and storcks festival in Andrid. So the heritage is mainly that of biodiversity, the zone being protected as natural area (and also a former European project in this regard), but including also a few historic monuments. In the Ér valley (Érmellék), which in Hungarian is a hills area but in Romanian it is called "the Ér plain" (Câmpia Ierului), there is a locality connected to memorial heritage, the village Ady Endre (previously Érmindszent), with the house of the poet.

      On the other hand, the epicentre of the earthquake laid between Dindești, a village of Andrid, Andrid, Piscolt and Galospetreu. Dindești (Dengeleg in Hungarian) was a village with also German population, since the comune belonged for a while to the Károlyi family. Here, like in other cases in the presentation, the tower of the Greek catholic church (built 1800) collapsed in the earthquake. Tiream and Santău are other localities in the Satu-Mare part of Câmpia Ierului with Swabian population, in fact, with notable Swabian population even today.

    • AC2: Érmellék tectonic region, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 02 Apr 2020

      According to the publication "Andrid. A cultural and historical guide" by The County Museum of Satu Mare: "The Ier Plain was formed in the old place of an ancient tectonic ditch which until the early Holocene period was the drainage bed of the whole hydrographic system of the Upper Tisza.  Important elements of the village ecosystem in the Ier Valley are the streams that drain water from the plateau of Carei." The publication also lists damages to reformed churches of the three villages of Andrid commune, namely "The area of Andrid suffered several natural disasters during the nineteenth century. Since 1829 and for a decade onwards, there have been no less than six earthquakes of 6-7 degrees magnitude on the Richter scale, which affected or even destroyed totally several households. Of the monuments of the village, the Calvinist Church of Andrid was ruined in 1832 requiring total reconstruction. [...] The initial phase of the wall church dates before 1787, when the first written documents were made on its general aspect: it was surrounded by an enclosure and had a bell tower. After the earthquake of 1834, the walls cracked and the tower collapsed, forcing to entirely rebuild the edifice. Works of restoration started in 1839, but due to the lack of funds, the tower was hardly added in 1862." The orthodox church was built 1821-25, but did not suffer notable damages. Also in Dindesti "The Calvinist Church has acquired its current aspect following the reconstruction-works after the earthquake of 1834, which destroyed the building almost entirely. After the disaster, for a period of over a decade, the mass was held in the ruined church, whose few intact structures were stabilized with wooden beams. The re-building of the church was started in 1846." About the Greek catholic church damages are noted in other sources, not here. Also in Irina, the 3rd village in the commune, it is written about the Calvinist church "The present church, built of brick structure between 1804-1807, is on the place of the former wooden church. Only two decades after the building it required repairs due to the earthquakes that shook the area around 1830. The Clock tower, built into the ship, was built between 1858 and 1860."

      In conclusion, the geography and topography of the region, the ones which are favourable for the storks (Andrid is part of the Stork village network at euronatur) and also for the acacia forests (in Valea lui Mihai the days of the town are called "blossoming acacia days" Nyíló akác napok in Hungarian), may be at the same time the reason for the earthquake through the hydrologic-tectonic setting. Regarding the natural landscape, which may be relevant also for the geoheritage session at the EGU for which I had the sister paper to the one in this session last year, Valea Rece, a part of the Érmellék region (Valea Ierului), is IUCN IV classified.

      • CC3: geomorphology and water, Magdalena Bostenaru, 10 Apr 2020

        Thank you for your response.

        So the geomorphology determined today's naturally protected area. Probably the fauna is connected to the non-living elements, so in the swamps of the watercourse frogs are living, which are eaten by storks. 

        The tectonic features may have led also to other water related characteristics, such as thermal water, as for example in Tășnad.

        • AC5: swamps: Ecsedi láp, water and earthquakes, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 10 Apr 2020

          A good online study I found on the geology and geography of the Ér (Ier) valley can be found here (accessed 10.04.2020, see impressum for the rights) including graphics of the two most important earthquakes from the 6 affected (and 4 included in the BIGSEES database), namely that in 1829 and 1834. The study also mentions the Ecsedi láp (Ecsed swamp), which was dried out 1898. Speaking of monuments, in Carei there is a nice Art Nouveau building of the Ecsedi láp. There are also attempts to renaturate the area.

          A colleague of mine in Karlsruhe has made his doctorate on the hydrogeological prediction of earthquakes including thermal waters (Jens Hartmann: Statistische Analyse Erdbeben bezogener hydrogeologischer und geochemischer Signale an Beispielen aus der Vrancea-Zone, Kamchatka und Japan, doctorate thesis, University of Karlsruhe, available online at

          Interesting is however the position in field/low hills, since many times these type of springs are in the mountains, and the earthquakes too, as at the place tectonic plates meet, mountains were formed (or seas). The study of Bihardioszeg shows exactly this, that in geologic times there was the Pannonian sea.

          • CC5: foreign languages, Magdalena Bostenaru, 10 Apr 2020

            It is a pity that all these studies are available in Hungarian and not in English as well.

            It is often that such studies then remain regional and are less cited.

            European projects, or even bilateral cooperation, would help.

            • AC11: cross-border landscapes cultural heritage, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 22 Apr 2020

              It is an issue of cross-border landscapes: first the landscape across Europe taken with by the colonists from the country of origin, a large bridge, and then the landscape in the triangle Romania-Hungary-Ucraine where the settlements of the colonists and struck by the earthquake are situated. I attended the Le Notre landscape forum on this topic, joining the working group on cultural heritage. Heritage trails as those where I took some information from are important, but also cross border projects as some from where these resulted. Such trails are important for tourism, and when architecture becomes object of tourism, it moves towards geosciences, incl. geography.

      • CC4: towers of churches, Magdalena Bostenaru, 10 Apr 2020

        From the presentation I saw that mainly the towers of churches were damaged, further damaging the rest of the building.

        But in the epicentre, in Andrid, whole churches were damaged as well.

        • AC6: towers of Transylvania Saxon fortified churches in Romania, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 10 Apr 2020

          Also when I was in Karlsruhe, Dr. Emil-Sever Georgescu held an invited lecture on how the towers of these churches are lower and thiker, hence with a lower vibration period, when coming closer to the Vrancea epicentre.

        • CC6: Reply to CC4, Orsolya Kegyes-Brassai, 20 Apr 2020

          It would be interesting to see the Bara (203) paper or book you are refering to in the presentation.

          • AC7: Sources for damages on church towers, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 20 Apr 2020

            Thank you for your question. There are various sources by Julia Bara who did a doctorate in Cluj on the topic, so I assume they are all included in the doctorate thesis:

            SECOLUL XVIII, UNIVERSITATEA BABEȘ-BOLYAI, FACULTATEA DE ISTORIE ȘI FILOSOFIE, ŞCOALA DOCTORALĂ "ISTORIE, CIVILIZAŢIE, CULTURĂ"defended 30th of November 2012, available at (in Romanian) . I suppose there is also a summary in other languages such as English and Hungarian.

            There are some papers published before or afterwards, available on, such as:

            - Júlia Bara: Date noi privind construcţia bisericii Sfântul Iosif de Calasanz din Carei (New Data Regarding the Construction of the Saint Joseph Calasanz Piarist Church in Carei), In: Studia Universitatis Babeş-Bolyai. Seria Historia Artium, LVI, 1, 2011, pp. 59 - 77 (in Romanian).  But also the description of the church at the entrance (on site) contains some information on the earthquake and reconstruction.

            - Júlia Bara (2016): Joseph Bittheuser (1755–1828), a Károlyi család uradalmi építészének tevékenysége Szatmár megyében. In: Fundálók, pallérok, építészek Erdélyben. Szerk: Orbán János. Maros Megyei Múzeum; Erdélyi Múzeum-Egyesület, Marosvásárhely; Kolozsvár, p. 53-90 (in Hungarian). This refers as the title sais on the activity of Joseph Bittheuser only, but includes the churches in Foieni, Petresti, Sandra and the reformed church in Carei. It includes some archive images of plans, which are available also at hungaricana, but also some archive images. The archive images show the towers, but not the interior with vaults before the damage in the earthquake.

            Information on the Greek catholic church in Carei was taken from a book bought there, but there is also an exhibition in the church with the history. Also, some web pages for tourism mention the damages.

          • AC8: further sources for damages on church towers, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 20 Apr 2020

            I forgot some sources, which are not related to Julia Bara's research, as the Greek Catholic church.

            For the churches in Ciumesti there is a webpage which states the architect of the Roman Catholic church, which is the same one as for Baia Sprie, in the same episcopate. It also states the damages in the reformed church, which can also be found on the previously mentioned webpage which I used for the Greek Catholic and Orthodox churches in Carei, a site from an EU HURO project namely . The reformed church in Ciumesti was also subject of an exhibition at the Romanian Architecture Biennale and an entry on this is published in another databases.

          • AC12: further source to localities and damages, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 22 Apr 2020

            In the Vasárnap catholic newspaper recently there was a summary of what can be found in the book of

            which I could not find online, about Sanislău. It is to be supposed that it is also about other localities.

            On that village it is written that the Roman-catholic curch was built 1824, in the 1834 earthquake it was made to ruin, and then György Károlyi put to be rebuilt in 1841.

  • CC2: Seismic active Zone, Mirela-Adriana Anghelache, 09 Apr 2020

    In the Crisana - Maramures (CM) seismic active zone the historical information suggests that at least one earthquake greater than 6 occured. Yet, last century there was just one earthquake around 5. The damages, which were mapped in this study due a particular earthquake from XIXth century, bring an additional information concerning the importance of considering CM a zone prone to seismic hazard.

    • AC3: an earthquake sequence like in the recent Central Italy earthquake - maybe to compare in future research?, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 10 Apr 2020

      Thank you very much for your comment! I looked up this information in the BIGSEES project (, for the map ). There the biggest earthquake is given 1829, although the most damaging according to the literature below seems to be that in 1834. 1834 is also included, but with less intensity. It might be, as also other studies of mine show (in my research abroad I simulated with SeismoSoft applying a second earthquake on a predamaged building, on a predamaged and then retrofited building etc., including also the different costs), that the 1834 earthquake affected already predamaged structures, as for example we can note in the recent Central Italy earthquakes, where there was also a successive earthquake sequence. It might be a topic of collaboration for a research with specialists, who showed interest in Romanian-Italian cooperation. The BIGSEES includes also two earthquakes in the past century, but they are small. But in no case all 10 years of activity around 1834. In any case, it is also to be seen in connection which the introduction on Hungarian seismicity in our common paper.

      This is a good occasion to link the research by Zsíros, available on Springer ( but also free here . I tried to map those intensities in the figure with colours in the google map included in the presentation. There is also this article with a map (article in Hungarian, but the figure legend is also in English). In the Zsíros article it is affirmed that the intensities were established according to damages to common buildings, for which reason I examined the vernacular typology, but, as said, the most recent I found is postearthquake. For this reason I looked also to the typology in the origin places of the colonists. The museum in Kürnbach contains houses of Swabians up to 500 years old, so before the immigration. The origin region has moderate seismicity, and a catalogue is waiting to be published and which was presented at the ESC in 2016 ( It would be an interesting research to compare and eventually apply those methods in the future for the Érmellék region. In fact, the city hall of Andrid is saying on its page about the earthquakes which occured there, so locally it may be known very well. I found also an article on seismicity of SW Germany (Schneider, G. (1968). Erdbeben und Tektonik in Südwest-Deutschland. Tectonophysics 5 (6):459-511) which I mapped in the other google map in the presentation.

      Thank you for all the ideas, as I am hoping to find funding to publish a monograph on different aspects of the area not touched by other publications, also the nature as stated in the other comment.

      • AC10: central Italy earthquakes and progressive collapse, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 22 Apr 2020

        I found this very interesting paper which I could access, it is a review paper

        Cescatti, E., Salzano, P., Casapulla, C. et al. Damages to masonry churches after 2016–2017 Central Italy seismic sequence and definition of fragility curves. Bull Earthquake Eng 18, 297–329 (2020).

        It is very recent, from January this year. So research on such topics is very recent, like the doctorate already mentioned.

        In November 2019 there was also a whole special number in the Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering, including a paper on damage to church buildings

        Penna, A., Calderini, C., Sorrentino, L. et al. Damage to churches in the 2016 central Italy earthquakes. Bull Earthquake Eng 17, 5763–5790 (2019).

        In this paper, as I have already noted, they look to successive earthquake sequences, and also to behaviour of churches on intervention on them, but also to performance of churches compared to ordinary buildings in case of the felt intensities (the first paper looks more at intensities). The 3rd earthquake out of the 4 was mostly affecting Norcia, to which I found a historic photo of a 19th century earthquake, which I wanted to relate to historic photos of disasters at the Canadian Centre of Architecture, so 19th century earthquakes like Érmellék may be unfortunately reccurent, also when surface earthquakes.

        Cummulative damage is handled in this paper, but not reffering to churches specifically

        Graziani, L., del Mese, S., Tertulliani, A. et al. Investigation on damage progression during the 2016–2017 seismic sequence in Central Italy using the European Macroseismic Scale (EMS-98). Bull Earthquake Eng 17, 5535–5558 (2019).

        There is another paper on central Italy earthquakes which I cannot unfortunetely access from my location, but it looks only on Marche, also struck by other earthquakes, and not to Umbria, Abruzzo and Lazio, where the effects were felt as well as far as I know

        Claudia Canuti, Sandro Carbonari, Andrea Dall’Asta, Luigino Dezi, Fabrizio Gara, Graziano Leoni, Michele Morici, Enrica Petrucci, Andrea Prota & Alessandro Zona (2019) Post-Earthquake Damage and Vulnerability Assessment of Churches in the Marche Region Struck by the 2016 Central Italy Seismic Sequence, International Journal of Architectural Heritage, DOI: 


    • AC4: damage to churches and the macroelements method, connection to urban planning, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 10 Apr 2020

      This is an occasion to introduce also another reference which is not named as such in the presentation (so an occasion of revision). Out of numerous papers on the method of macroelements of Sergio Lagomarsino, I consider the most suitable that published in the SI in Bulletin of Earthquake Engineering after the RISK-UE project. I followed closely the RISK-UE project, since it included also Bucharest, and the reports, and also the "urban system exposure" method is very interesting for me as urban planner and should be seen in connection with this method. This is the paper: Lagomarsino, S. On the vulnerability assessment of monumental buildings. Bull Earthquake Eng 4, 445–463 (2006). . The specific application to churches is described here . I tried to work with the method during my postdoc in geography, because it was interesting to see how such landmarks as churches can be related to common buildings like those which were considered by Zsíros (see previous comment). This is an urban planning method which started with innovative approaches to urban maps (so to geography in which field the postdoc was) in the 1960s ("image of the city" by Lynch, derivé and psychogeography, and for Venice Caniggia and Muratori). Caniggia and Muratori followed somehow an Italian tradition started in the 17th century by Nolli with the plan for the city of Rome. While I had the second postdoc in Rome (this time in architecture), I consulted their works in the Hertziana library. Maybe I should do such a research in Venice when I can in the future. In the paper from the geography postdoc (Bostenaru Dan, M. and Armas, I.: Earthquake impact on settlements: the role of urban and structural morphology, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 15, 2283–2297,, 2015) I propose how to deal with these different geographic scales in assessment of damage, which also take into consideration the difference between common buildings and monuments, for the central area of Bucharest, in a way it wasn't done in the German SFB461 project in which I worked when I started collaborating with this session. I intended indeed to continue by switching from the scale of the urban area within Bucharest to the scale of the region, which I've done in this Domus scholarship, as the postdoc finished and there was no time left.

      Returning to the Central Italy earthquakes, the method is shown in this recent paper: Penna, A., Calderini, C., Sorrentino, L. et al. Damage to churches in the 2016 central Italy earthquakes. Bull Earthquake Eng 17, 5763–5790 (2019).

    • AC9: simulating intensities of historic earthquakes, an example in another area where the Károlyi counts have built, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 22 Apr 2020

      I found a recent doctoral dissertation

      Eduardo José de Azevedo Charters Fuentes Morais: Estimation of the Intensities of Historical Seismic Events in Moderately Seismic Regions, Based on the Damage Analysis of Hungarian Historical Buildings, Pál Vásárhelyi Doctoral School, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Budapest, Hungary, November 2018.

      It is available on the net in English.

      It deals with another historic earthquake, but from a similar time (1763), in an area where the Károlyi counts had other castles. It would be interesting in this research.

      There is also an open access journal article

      E. Charters Morais, L. G. Vigh & J. Krähling (2019) Cyclic Behaviour, Dynamic Analysis and Seismic Vulnerability of Historical Building Archetypes in Hungary, International Journal of Architectural Heritage, DOI: 

      However, simulating the intensity is above the limits of this project, as it took to write a doctorate for a single earthquake.

      I came over this work looking for how churches in Portugal were affected in the 1755 earthquake which was in a similar time and maybe it would have been possible to simulate afterwards, especially since in my book on the Lisbon earthquake I've mapped some of them which are in the azulejos representation of pre-earthquake Lisbon (in the first book in the series before our workshop, maybe it would be worth to do a second, as it is due this year).

  • CC7: Comment on EGU2020-6825, Mirela-Adriana Anghelache, 23 Apr 2020

    Thank you for your comments to the  suggested topic, they bring an important and rich information regarding seismic zonation, with examples from  abroad (Italy, Hungary, Germany etc). As I see the north-western part of Romania is wealthy in historical buildings and it could be a good hint to develop an international collaborative research regarding the seismic hazard assessment in order to protect and reduce the possible future earthquake damages of historical buildings.

    • AC14: international projects in border regions and tourist routes, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 28 Apr 2020

      Thank you for your question.

      In the comment above on cross border landscape I refered to the Le Notre landscape forum on Cross border landscapes, which took place online focusing on the landscape between Bratislava, Vienna and the Hungarian part at that border. I was in the working group on Heritage and Identity, where research questions touched also heritage trails and tourism. In the DanURB project I worked earlier on, hidden heritage for tourism was an item. The heritage in this region is also such a hidden heritage, and a number of cross border projects deal with it. An article where I wrote about such cross border projects is "The presence of the forest in the city of Karlsruhe, Germany and Carei, Romania – occasion for cultural events", published in Argument 5/2013. But also, a webpage I referenced, is the result of such a cross border project. Another cross border project was , between Petresti and Vállaj, valorising architecture on one side and culinary tradition on the other. Unlike DanURB which was looking to the Danube crossing more countries, these projects are between Romania and Hungary. But also at DanURB numerous events were directed to cross Danube and cross border cooperation between sister cities on the Danube at different frontiers (Romania-Bulgaria, Romania-Serbia, Hungary-Slovakia etc. and one could go on with Slovakia-Austria, Austria-Germany etc.). An issue raised at the Le Notre forum was that EU funding is limited in time and afterwards local associations have to continue the project.

      • AC15: Reply to AC14, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 30 Apr 2020

        I was thinking that the border region in question for this area has the particularity, like the other border region of Danube Swabians at the Iron Gate, of having a non-EU country. Here the Sathmar Swabians had localities in the Ukraine, Hungary and Romania. On the other hand, at the Iron Gate, the Banat Swabians are spread over Serbia, Hungary and Romania. Ukraine and Serbia are non-EU and this gives something else for project funding. Also the fact that Romania is not Schengen, makes a different if making cross frontier tourist trails. At the Le Notre forum focusing on Slovakia, Hungary and Austria, this was different during the Iron Curtain with Austria being West, but now they are all EU and Schengen.

  • CC8: Comment on EGU2020-6825, Marina Mihaila, 27 Apr 2020

    Nice presentation, both architectural and cultural, congratulations.

    I would be very interested to read more about architectural vernacular inputs resulted in housing from such areals, if there are any. 

    • AC13: vernacular housing in the Sathmar-Bihar region, Maria Bostenaru Dan, 28 Apr 2020

      Thank you for your question.

      Indeed, the measurement of seismic intensity by Zsíros was done using reports of damages on vernacular buildings. Also in the doctorate on establishing retroactively the intensity of the Komárom earthquake which I referenced, used damages on vernacular adobe buildings.

      I examined using the World Housing Encyclopedia (an encyclopedia on engineered and vernacular housing in earthquake prone areas of the world) questionnnaire an examination of typical Swabian houses. Apart of the one which is Swabian museum in Petresti, there is the one of my ancestors, which you can see modelled here

      In the lower part of the image there is the master beam transformed in a column on which it is written that the ancestors named "Merli" built the house.

      This goes over to the other topic, since the name means in many languages a bird, the one of the natural park these constructions are situated in, and the vernacular type is typical for a region called Valea Ierului. Here according to "Arhitectura tradițională din Valea Ierului - Împletiturile vegetale în construcții" by Tamás Czirják, dissertation work at the Technical University of Cluj, Romania, 2016 (available on issuu), the majority of buildings did not survive time being out of adobe. But, one can see an evolution in reciproc influencing between ethnic Hungarian and ethinic Swabian population. The Swabians had a different floor plan, which was taken over by the others, while the Swabians took over the materials, not being able to find timber like in their home where there were many forests. Jürgen Kniep (2014) Houses. People. Stories [in German], Oberschwäbisches Museumsdorf Kürnbach, Bad Schussenried-Kürnbach, 64 pp., ISBN 978-3-9815212-1-4 (reviewed for UAC) presents the typical floor plans of housing in the origin area, along with other works on the museum. It is a topic of further research to look into this issue. Valea Ierului the one mentioned in the dissertation is the natural protected area I wrote about in the first comments. Main heritage is natural, but also vernacular heritage is important, and the dissertation presents two examples of restored typical houses. As this typology is not included in village museums in Romania, it is worth to look at it. It can also be compared to two houses in the Village Museum of Bucharest from Banat, and possibly to those in the Banat Museum in Timisoara, as well as to those of Swabians in the Museum of Szententre, Budapest. But the Banat Swabians had plans coming from Vienna, and they came later, so there might be different reasons. For the Banat Swabians there were two doctorates at our university, by Gabriel Panasiu and by Iconica Sabaila, with contradicting theories on the influences from home country or from immigration country, to which the dissertation quoted above gives a new answer.