The epistolary archive of Raffaele Bendandi, a seismologist standing outside the institutions

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Paola Lagorio


Raffaele Bendandi (1893-1979) is a typical, very Italian, of a scholar example of seismology, trained outside the institutions and with whom relations were difficult for most of the time. A skilled craftsman, endowed with great inquisitiveness and undoubted intelligence and endeavour, Bendandi was self-taught and his seismological and astronomical interests merged in his theory of planetary influence in the process of release of seismic energy.

The practical result of this theory was the possibility, according to Bendandi, of foreseeing earthquakes in every part of the world. From the 1920s until his death, Bendandi made numerous forecasts for different parts of the world arousing the interest of people and countless national and international newspapers. The Bendandi phenomenon ended up being considered a problem for official science and for some governments, which forbade the dissemination of his forecasts. Bendandi’s human and scientific story is documented in what remains of his archive of handwritten studies: letters, daily notes with his forecasts. All of this material is being reordered, digitally scanned and studied at Casa Bendandi, the head quarters of «La Bendandiana» association of Faenza, and will be made available to the scientific community and the history of science.

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How to Cite
Lagorio P. The epistolary archive of Raffaele Bendandi, a seismologist standing outside the institutions. Ann. Geophys. [Internet]. 2009Dec.25 [cited 2022Aug.17];52(6):651-6. Available from: