Evidence from mountain glaciers does suggest increased glaciation in a number of widely spread regions outside Europe prior to the twentieth century, including Alaska , New Zealand and Patagonia. However, the timing of maximum glacial advances in these regions differs considerably, suggesting that they may represent largely independent regional climate changes , not a globally-synchronous increased glaciation.
Thus current evidence does not support globally synchronous periods of anomalous cold or warmth over this interval, and the conventional terms of "Little Ice Age" and " Medieval Warm Period " appear to have limited utility in describing trends in hemispheric or global mean temperature changes in past centuries It states that "when viewed together, the currently available reconstructions indicate generally greater variability in centennial time scale trends over the last 1 kyr than was apparent in the TAR The result is a picture of relatively cool conditions in the seventeenth and early nineteenth centuries and warmth in the eleventh and early fifteenth centuries, but the warmest conditions are apparent in the twentieth century.
Given that the confidence levels surrounding all of the reconstructions are wide, virtually all reconstructions are effectively encompassed within the uncertainty previously indicated in the TAR. The major differences between the various proxy reconstructions relate to the magnitude of past cool excursions, principally during the twelfth to fourteenth, seventeenth and nineteenth centuries.
There is no consensus regarding the time when the Little Ice Age began,   but a series of events before the known climatic minima has often been referenced.
In the 13th century, pack ice began advancing southwards in the North Atlantic , as did glaciers in Greenland. Anecdotal evidence suggests expanding glaciers almost worldwide. Based on radiocarbon dating of roughly samples of dead plant material with roots intact, collected from beneath ice caps on Baffin Island and Iceland , Miller et al. Therefore, any of several dates ranging over years may indicate the beginning of the Little Ice Age: The Little Ice Age ended in the latter half of the 19th century or early in the 20th century.
Farms and villages in the Swiss Alps were destroyed by encroaching glaciers during the midth century. Freezing of the Golden Horn and the southern section of the Bosphorus took place in The winter of — was particularly harsh: Sea ice surrounding Iceland extended for miles in every direction, closing harbors to shipping.
The population of Iceland fell by half, but that may have been caused by skeletal fluorosis after the eruption of Laki in Greenland was largely cut off by ice from to the s. Crop practices throughout Europe had to be altered to adapt to the shortened, less reliable growing season, and there were many years of dearth and famine such as the Great Famine of — , but that may have been before the Little Ice Age.
In Estonia and Finland in —97, losses have been estimated at a fifth and a third of the national populations, respectively. Some of them resulted in permanent loss of large areas of land from the Danish, German, and Dutch coasts. The colder climate is proposed to have caused the wood used in his violins to be denser than in warmer periods, contributing to the tone of his instruments. Fireplace hoods were installed to make more efficient use of fires for indoor heating, and enclosed stoves were developed, with early versions often covered with ceramic tiles.
In the late 17th century, agriculture had dropped off dramatically: Both of these outcomes — disease and unemployment — enhance each other, generating a lethal positive feedback loop. Evidence from several studies indicate that increases in violent actions against marginalized groups that were held responsible for the Little Ice Age overlap with years of particularly cold, dry weather. Oster and Behringer argue that this resurgence was brought upon by the climatic decline.
Prior to the Little Ice Age, "witchcraft" was considered an insignificant crime and victims were rarely accused. Not everybody agreed that witches should be persecuted for weather-making, but such arguments primarily focused not upon whether witches existed, but upon whether witches had the capability to control the weather. Burroughs claims that there had been almost no depictions of winter in art, and he "hypothesizes that the unusually harsh winter of inspired great artists to depict highly original images and that the decline in such paintings was a combination of the 'theme' having been fully explored and mild winters interrupting the flow of painting".
Since landscape painting had not yet developed as an independent genre in art, the absence of other winter scenes is not remarkable. His son Pieter Brueghel the Younger — also painted many snowy landscapes, but according to Burroughs, he "slavishly copied his father's designs. The derivative nature of so much of this work makes it difficult to draw any definite conclusions about the influence of the winters between and There is then a hiatus between and , before the main period of such subjects from the s to the s, which relates well with climate records for the later period.
The subjects are less popular after about , but that does not match any recorded reduction in severity of winters and may reflect only changes in taste or fashion. In the later period between the s and s, snowy subjects again became popular. Both Europeans and indigenous peoples suffered excess mortality in Maine during the winter of —, and extreme frost was reported in the Jamestown, Virginia , settlement at the same time.
The extent of mountain glaciers had been mapped by the late 19th century. In China , warm-weather crops such as oranges were abandoned in Jiangxi Province , where they had been grown for centuries.
Africa[ edit ] In Ethiopia and North Africa, permanent snow was reported on mountain peaks at levels where it does not occur today. The event is the most dramatic climate event in the SD Holocene glaciochemical record. In the north, evidence suggests fairly dry conditions, but coral cores from the Great Barrier Reef show similar rainfall as today but with less variability.
A study that analyzed isotopes in Great Barrier Reef corals suggested that increased water vapor transport from southern tropical oceans to the poles contributed to the Little Ice Age. This was associated with a 1. In , another expedition noticed that the glacier reached the lagoon and calved into large icebergs. Hans Steffen visited the area in , noticing that the glacier penetrated far into the lagoon. Such historical records indicate a general cooling in the area between and Milankovich cycles Orbital forcing from cycles in the earth's orbit around the sun has, for the past 2, years, caused a long-term northern hemisphere cooling trend that continued through the Middle Ages and the Little Ice Age.
The rate of Arctic cooling is roughly 0.