Summer temperature patterns over Europe: A reconstruction from 1750 A.D. based on maximum latewood density indices of conifers

KR Briffa, PD Jones, FH Schweingruber

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Abstract

Temperature variations over Europe are reconstructed for a 6-month "summer" season from April to September for the period 1750-1850 using a network of maximum latewood density chronologies of coniferous trees. Around 44% of the variance of the whole temperature grid was explained in calibration. Independent verification indicates that over the reconstruction period the explained variance averaged over the whole grid should lie in the range 30 to 35%. The reconstructions are better in the north of the region (about 50% explained temperature variance based on comparison with independent climate data) than in the south (below 20%). The temperature recontructions indicate cooler summers over Europe from 1812 to 1816 and during the 1830s. The summers of the 1820s were the warmest reconstructed. Decadal variations occur on a regional scale but no similar periods of anomalously cooler or warmer summers occurred between 1750 and 1810 throughout Europe.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-52
Number of pages17
JournalQuaternary Research
Volume30
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1988

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