I found the following:
ΔΗΛΟΣ ἘΚΙΝΉΘΗ: An ‘Imaginary Earthquake’ on Delos in Herodotus and Thucydides
Jeffrey S. Rusten
Thucydides’ and Herodotus’ comments on a portentous (and unique) Delian earthquake contain the same phrase, but date the event almost 60 years apart and mutually rule out each other’s datings. Two additional problems in these passages – geology demonstrates that Delos has never in fact had an earthquake of any significance and κινεῖν is not the word for an earthquake – point to an explanation for the historians’ treatment. They are based on the Delphic oracle quoted by Herodotus which promised to ‘move unmoved Delos’, a paradox based on the island’s mythical transition from floating to fixed (Pindar), but liable to confusion with its equally well-known aseismicity. Normally κινεῖν τὰ ἀκίνητα is used of interfering with religious sites; but the oracle’s prediction was interpreted as an earthquake, that was assumed to have occurred in due course (although it had not). Both historians accepted the interpretation, but followed different datings since they invested it with different symbolism, Herodotus of the evils of the Persian and subsequent Greek wars, Thucydides of excited anticipation on the eve of the Peloponnesian War, since for him κίνησις meant ‘mobilization’ (1.1).
Considering the contradictory reports of an “earth shaking” event given by Herodotus and Thucydides, my initial determination was to discard both events as not historical. However, when turning to the Battle of Marathon which was connected to the shaking event reported by Herodotus, and noting the famous alleged celestial prodigies, it seemed useful to include those reports here as possibly indicating some sort of celestial event, comet, fireball, etc. That one person was blinded by the encounter might suggest a brilliant fireball.
It is also curious that Jan-Wim Wesselius, in “The Origin of the History of Israel: Herodotus’ Histories as Blueprint for the First Books of the Bible”, (2002, Journal For the Study of The Old Testament Supplement Series 345, Sheffield Academic Press), based on the structural analysis ideas of Claude Levi-Strauss, proposes a significant amount of borrowing from The Histories of Herodotus for the composition of the Primary History of Israel. In particular, he writes:
I shall first attempt to demonstrate that in both works in their present shape there is a common element, which, though well hidden and hitherto never noticed, is so characteristic that it is almost unthinkable that there would not be a direct connection between the two, namely the important position of the key figures of Joseph, the son of the patriarch Jacob, who became viceroy of Egypt, on the one hand, and King Cyrus, the founder of the great Persian empire on the other. … there are a number of rather precise parallels between individual members of the families of Joseph and Cyrus, and that on this basis we can postulate a striking congruence between the genealogy of the patriarchs and that of the Persian Median royal house, exposing a number of parallelisms between persons belonging to corresponding generations. The most surprising of these parallels is between the figures of Moses and King Xerxes, not in the description of their character, appearance or course of life, but in certain aspects of their careers as leaders of their people. It will be noted in this connection that the main subjects of Primary History and the work of Herodotus are surprisingly similar: a leader, summoned by the divinity, brings an enormous army into another continent across a body of water as on dry land in order to conquer a country there. In both cases, the conquest finally comes to naught when the last city remaining in the hands of the conquerors is reduced by means of a gruelling siege. … (p.5-6)
In view of this correspondence, one cannot help but speculate about the mythicization of what may have been a cosmic event around the time of the Battle of Marathon. The description of the apparition: “a tall man-at-arms (he said) encountered him, whose beard spread all over his shield” involve cometary imagery such as a shield and the beard. The possibility exists for a Tunguska-like event that shook the ground violently, blinded the soldier (and possibly others), killed multiple combatants, and was later separated into more than one event: an event at Delos and apparitions of gods at the battle. If this is the case, and if this event - The Battle of Marathon - was selected as the model for the Exodus story, there may have been some awareness on the part of the author of the NT tale that there was, in fact, an “apparition of gods” at Marathon and this was transformed into an apparition of Yahweh on behalf of the Israelites. One notices the comparison of “an apparition of Theseus in arms rushing on in front of them” to the pillar of smoke/fire that went before the fleeing Israelites.