Der Bergsturz by David A. Schmid (1806)

Painting of the Goldauer Bergsturz, a massive landslide that destroyed the town Goldau in the Swiss mountains, by sixteen year old swiss artist David Alois Schmid (1791 – 1861).

Switzerland; 19. Century; Christian; Painting; City: Goldau

Nature does not know disasters

“Only man knows natural disasters, so far as he survives them. Nature does not know disasters.”

“Katastrophen kennt allein der Mensch, sofern er sie überlebt; die Natur kennt keine Katastrophen.“

from: Max Frisch: Der Mensch erscheint im Holozän. (1979)

The German term “Katastrophe” (Catastrophe) stems from the Greek name for a sudden turn of events and in antiquity was commonly used to describe a plot twist in a comedy. The English “disaster” literally means “bad star”. G. J. Schenk speculates that the usage of the term was made popular by the stories of Sindbad The Sailor in the Middle East in the 17th Century.

Switzerland; 20. Century; Christian; Literature