Examples of stories, myths and legends from active volcanic areas, in many cases recording past phenomena beyond usual possibili- ties of investigation, are here provided. The active volcanoes are seen as the gates of Hell (Hekla, Etna, Teide, Averno) or the holy res- idences of gods (Fuji, Kenia, Gunung Agung, Kilauea...), or the jail in the depths of the Earth of defeated Cyclops, Giants, Titans (Nysiros, Procida), or again (Campi Flegrei) the battlefield devastated during the struggle between giants and gods (i.e. between bar- barism and order, between man and destructive forces of nature). Some volcanoes ask for sacrifices, prayers and gifts to restrain their fury (Bromo, Nyamuragira, Nyiragongo, Coseguina, Vesuvius, Mauna Loa), but others are protagonists of popular love histories (Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl, Mayon, Ruapehu, Tangariro and Taranaki, Tangkuban Perahu, Kilauea,...). Several stories coincide with the results that scientific research has required years to collect: the arrival of Pele at Hawaii while disputing with her sister, the last eruption of Lipari and Saint Calogero, the shape of the Vesuvius caldera and Spartacus, the year without summer in Alaska... A lecture on myths and volcanoes cannot exclude Atlantis and the various hypotheses, not evidently incredible, involving volcanic phe- nomena.
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