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The heatwave over England and the great hailstorm in Somerset, July 1808


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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

Charles II would have been gratified to have experienced the weather of July 1808, having said that the English summer consisted of three sunny days and a thunderstorm.The heatwave and thunderstorm in July of that year was exceptional, so it is surprising that it has been overlooked by contemporary texts on weather and climate. One indication of the temperature in July comes from the monthly temperature record for Central England by Manley (1974); he gave a mean temperature of 18.4 °C, a value only exceeded five times since. Other temperature data come from Bristol, London, and Stroud. Absolute comparison of temperatures is not possible since the conditions under which the instruments were kept, as well as the reliability of the readings, is unknown.

heatwave 1808.pdf

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