Hunger stones are an interesting marker of drought in Europe. In the past, when river levels dropped to very low levels, those conditions were marked by inscriptions on rocks that only appeared above the water when levels were low. In the recent drought, many of these inscriptions on so-called “hunger stones” have reappeared, showing just how bad the current drought is. You can read more about these historical artifacts here.

A photo from August 2018 shows one of the ‘hunger stones’ revealed by low water levels in the Elbe River, in Decin, Czech Republic. In 2022, the stones emerged once more [Reuters/David W Cerny]