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Huaynaputina ( , Waynaputina) is a stratovolcano located in a volcanic upland in southern Perumarker. The volcano does not have an identifiable mountain profile, but instead has the form of a large volcanic crater. It has produced high-potassium andesite and dacite. On 19 February 1600, it exploded catastrophically (Volcanic Explosivity Index or VEI 6), in the largest volcanic explosion in South America in historic times. The eruption continued with a series of events into March. An account of the event was included in Fray Antonio Vazquez de Espinosa's, Compendio y Descripción de las Indias which was translated into English, as Compendium and description of the West Indies, in 1942.

Regional effects

When Huaynaputina exploded, it produced about 30 cubic km of tephra and pyroclastic flows traveled 13 km to the east and southeast, and lahars – volcanic mudflows – destroyed several villages and reached the coast of the Pacific Oceanmarker, a distance of 120 km. The eruption began with a Plinian plume that extended into the stratosphere, and the ashfall and accompanying earthquakes caused substantial damage to the major cities of Arequipamarker (70 km to the west) and Moqueguamarker.

Ashfall was reported 250–500 km away, throughout southern Peru, and in what is now northern Chilemarker and western Boliviamarker. The ash layer now forms a useful stratigraphic marker layer throughout Peru.

Regional agricultural economies took 150 years to fully recover.

Global effects


The explosion had effects on climate around the Northern Hemispheremarker (Southern hemispheric records are less complete), where 1601 was the coldest year in six centuries, leading to a famine in Russia; see Russian famine of 1601–1603.

Elsewhere in Europe

In Estoniamarker, Switzerlandmarker, and Latviamarker there were bitter cold winters in 1600-1602; in 1601 in Francemarker, the wine harvest came late; additionally, production of wine collapsed in Germanymarker and colonial Perumarker.


In Japan Lake Suwamarker had one of its earliest freezings in 500 years. In Chinamarker, peach trees bloomed late.


In Greenlandmarker the sulfuric acid spike was larger than that from Krakataumarker (1883).


  • (in Spanish; also includes volcanoes of Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru)

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