Pat Shingleton: " Origination of "Blizzard" and The Florentine Codex"
They are inferring that the system rolling up the Atlantic this weekend is a "Bomb..." It will create blizzard conditions in New England. “Blizzard” originally meant “a stunning blow,” often referred to a boxer’s knockout punch. Davy Crockett, no relation to Jennifer, used the word in reference to a barrage of rifle shot at a deer and to “taking a blizzard” to his prey. On March 24, 1870 the editor of the Iowa newspaper, the Easterville Vindicator, described a massive wind-driven snow event as a blizzard. He compared the event to a severe snowstorm that K.O.’ed the city. The following Spring, an Iowa baseball team changed its name to the Blizzards and within ten years numerous newspapers from New York to Canada were referencing their winter storms as blizzards. In closing, the Florentine Codex is an account of the Spanish conquest of Mexico in the mid-sixteenth century. It was an almanac and journal of virtually every aspect of the campaign including weather events. The Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society reported that the Codex identified the earliest documented tornado in the Americas in August, 1521. In Book XII, prior to the fall of Mexico-Tenochtitlan, a heavy storm was accompanied by a whirlwind that struck the Basin of Mexico. The whirlwind hovered above Tlatelolco, Tenochtitlan’s twin city, before moving to a nearby lake and disappearing. Researchers have compared this account with contemporary European descriptions of tornadoes and waterspouts, verifying the tornado. It also predates the Cambridge, MA tornado of 1680, representing the earliest documented twister in the Americas.