"Mount Etna eruptions of the last 2,750 years". Bulletin Of Volcanology. Vol. 70
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During this summer it is said that Sicily was invaded by such an amount of ash that roofs of the city of Catania were oppressed and overburden, and finally collapsed ” (St. Augustine, III, 31). “ At this time Mt. Etna burned more than usual and threatened the city of Catania and its outskirts by fiery torrents, so that the roofs of buildings collapsed, being overload and burned by hot ashes ” (Orosius, V, 13, 1). The more ancient authors Cicero and Seneca probably allude to the same event when they report that darkness lasted three days and lightning occurred in the volcanic plume. Let us point out that lava flows are indicated by Orosius alone, who wrote more than five centuries after the eruption. Such information, therefore, is of little value (see above a similar discussion regarding Diodorus and the Sicanians). Most current scientists, following Kieffer ( 1985 ), consider the 122 B.C. eruption as a large Plinian outburst (e.g., Coltelli et al. 1998 ). According to Kieffer, this event created the small caldera of the Cratere del Piano which is today almost entirely buried by the central cone. This view is supported by Strabo’s Geography describing, about a century later, a summit depression 3.8 km in circumference, or 1.2 km in diameter. Seneca said also that at his time (c. A.D. 60), Mt. Etna had a lower elevation than before ( letter to Lucilius , n. 51). Moreover, it seems that a long repose period followed the 122 B.C. eruption, as usually occurs after a caldera forming event.