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I have a parallel universe very similar to Earth but with a society with the technological level of Europe during the Middle Ages. I want this parallel Earth to be one big continent, one giant land mass, similar to Pangaea.

For example, would the climate be different or would it be the same as travelling different places on Earth? If you drove closer to the equator it would still get generally warmer; or the poles would still be snowy and cold.

Also, would animals wander all over or would they still stay in their general geographic areas?

Would one continent affect any natural disasters?

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  • $\begingroup$ Clearly you live in the northern hemisphere. If you drive south in South America, for instance, it gets colder, not warmer. Can you narrow your question to one of the topics you asked about? $\endgroup$ – Samuel Nov 22 '15 at 4:49
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for clearing that up. I am from Canada, so I am not so familiar with the climate that far south. I would be mostly interest with Pangaea's effect on the climate and natural disaster. $\endgroup$ – Addy Daudrich Nov 22 '15 at 13:48
  • $\begingroup$ It's been discussed before. See worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/search?q=Pangea $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Nov 23 '15 at 6:56
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It would still be warmer near the equator (why should not be so?). The main difference in climate would be that there would be big deserts inside the continent and bigger differences of temperatures (It was so on Pangea and even today, simplyfying, the further from the ocean, the drier and the more extreme temperatures, like on Gobi desert. It is so called continental climate.). The Pangea megamonsoon was and would in your scenario be "a distinct seasonal reversal of winds, resulting in extreme transitions between dry and wet periods throughout the year", in analogy to modern monsoons.

Some animals would spread, at least from east to west as from north to south differences in climate make it harder (we know about Pangea, among others, because we find fossils of the same animals on different modern continents — see image), but not all (Eurasia is one landmass, but there are no Siberian tigers in Europe). Animals from Pangea on different modern continents Source

I do not see much reasons to expect substantial differences in natural disasters. Most earthquakes happen at the boundaries of continental plates, but this includes boundaries inside continents like East African Rift and Himalayas: Earthquakes — most at boundaries of tectonic plates Source Tropical cyclones begin mostly above sea, so would of course more rarely go above land, if the coastline were shorter. Megamonsoon means droughts and floods.

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I think it comes down to Why its still Pangaea. Are the plates yet to shift and split the continents or is it still occurring? If its still ongoing, expect more mountain ranges to be forming and the earthquakes associated with them.

If this world isn't based on plates then I would guess it would be mostly flat. this would have a massive effect on weather (obviously) but also on fauna and flora. Without a mountain to get in the way, it's far easier to migrate large distances.

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  • $\begingroup$ Without tectonics, the continents would erode down below the sea. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Nov 23 '15 at 6:54
  • $\begingroup$ if it were to erode then it would likely deposit back on the coasts wouldnt it? So you'd end up with a shifting shoreline but a roughly stable landmass. $\endgroup$ – ECiurleo Nov 23 '15 at 10:59
  • $\begingroup$ No, they would end up as silt on the abyssal plain. And that's just from erosion. The upwelling propping up some landmasses would have stopped so you would have lost some stuff that way too. For weathering, mountains go away at 1 mm per year, so in a few million years the rockies are gone (again). $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Nov 23 '15 at 19:44
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From what I have read Pangaea was very dry inside particularly to the east because the inner part did not get much rain being furthest from any large source of water like the ocean and the last to get atmospheric circulation. I have also read that temperatures covered quite a range from about freezing at night to off 110 degrees during the day. Wiki bears out what I remember but I won't give that as a reference. What I will advise is to just google Pangaea climate. Look for articles giving things like NatGeo or some college or college professor as references. Another way is to look up science digest and put Pangaea in their search feature. The truth is though is that what we are looking at for information is a lot of speculation based on what we are digging up. Try to find more than one source for the things you are seeing because just about anyone can come up with a theory and even if a lot of people jump on it it can still be wrong if people do not have a wide variety of evidence to support it and when going that far back it can easily get to be iffy.

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