A historical analog of 2005 Hurricane Vince

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This paper documents a rare spell of severe weather in Spain that took place during the mid-nineteenth century when a tropical storm struck the southwest of the country on 29 October 1842. The use of a variety of independent documentary sources has provided unprecedented scope for the analysis of this event, allowing it to be set within its wider context, and for a judgement to be made on its tropical origin. The evidence suggests that this was similar, though stronger, to the more recent Hurricane Vince, which made landfall in Spain on 10 October 2005. This case study not only places Hurricane Vince, suggested at the time to have been unique, in its more proper long-term context, but it also demonstrates how documentary sources can improve our wider understanding of climate dynamics during historical times in the Atlantic basin.
© 2008 American Meteorological Society. We gratefully acknowledge librarians at historical libraries and societies for help in collecting historical data. We also thank Henry Díaz, Ramón Pérez, and an anonymous reviewer for their comments. The Spanish Ministry of Science and Education provided partial support through Grant MEC.CGL2005-25107-E/CLI. Cary Mock’s contribution is supported by NSF Grant ATM-0502105.
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