NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN (ALMOST)
28th December, 1908 : The festive season has come to an abrupt end for the wretched citizens of Messina. The horrors of San Francisco and Valparaiso are doubled in Messina, smashed in the most violent and cataclysmic earthquake recorded in Europe. Of the 150,000 inhabitants of Sicily’s second biggest town perhaps fewer than half are still alive, while thousands more have perished in the surrounding countryside and across the Straits of Medina in Calabria, the toe of Italy. Reports say the earthquake let loose massive tidal wave, adding another horrific dimension to the chaos, and it is feared that Reggio, across the Straits, may have suffered even greater devastation than Messina.