The Quill

Photo of this volcano
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  • Country
  • Volcanic Region
  • Primary Volcano Type
  • Last Known Eruption
  • 17.478°N
  • 62.96°W

  • 601 m
    1971 ft

  • 360020
  • Latitude
  • Longitude

  • Summit

  • Volcano

The Global Volcanism Program has no activity reports for The Quill.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Weekly Reports available for The Quill.

The Global Volcanism Program has no Bulletin Reports available for The Quill.

Basic Data

Volcano Number

Last Known Eruption



250 CE

601 m / 1971 ft


Volcano Types

Lava dome

Rock Types

Andesite / Basaltic Andesite
Basalt / Picro-Basalt

Tectonic Setting

Subduction zone
Oceanic crust (< 15 km)


Within 5 km
Within 10 km
Within 30 km
Within 100 km

Geological Summary

The Quill is a large dominantly andesitic stratovolcano that forms the SE end of St. Eustatius (Statia) Island. The 601-m-high volcano was formed about 32,000-22,000 years ago by rhyolitic eruptions on a shallow-water limestone bank 3 km offshore of an older 0.2 million years old volcanic center exposed at the NW end of the island. The interaction of rhyolitic magma with sea water produced pyroclastic-surge deposits, rich in limestone fragments, that joined the two islands and blanket the entire slopes of The Quill. The surges also swept across the older island and incorporated carbonized plant remains, shell fragments, and remains of fossil hermit crabs. A likely cryptodome tilted up limestones at Sugarloaf on the southern coast. A steep-sided crater, 760 m wide and more than 300 m deep caps The Quill; a notch on the western rim of the crater has directed the youngest pyroclastic flows towards the island's capital, Orangestad. The last dated eruption of The Quill produced pyroclastic flows about 1600 years ago.


The following references have all been used during the compilation of data for this volcano, it is not a comprehensive bibliography.

Robson G R, Tomblin J, 1966. West Indies. Catalog of Active Volcanoes of the World and Solfatara Fields, Rome: IAVCEI, 20: 1-56.

Roobol M J, Smith A L, 1989. Volcanic and associated hazards in the Lesser Antilles. In: Latter J H (ed), {Volcanic Hazards - Assessment and Monitoring}, Berlin: Springer-Verlag, p 57-85.

Roobol M J, Smith A L, 2004. Volcanology of Saba and St. Eustatius, northern Lesser Antilles. Amsterdam: Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Letters, 320 p.

Shepherd J B, 2001. Volcanoes of the eastern Caribbean: past activity and future hazards. Paper presented at the Workshop on Volcanic and Seismic Hazards in the eastern Caribbean, May 28- June 1, 2001, 57 p.

Smith A L, Roobol M J, 2005b. St. Eustatius. In: Lindsay J M, Robertson R E A, Shepherd J B, Ali S (eds). {Volcanic Hazard Atlas of the Lesser Antilles}, Trinidad and Tobago, Seismic Res Unit, Univ West Indies, p 192-202.

Eruptive History

Summary of Holocene eruption dates and Volcanic Explosivity Indices (VEI).

Start Date Stop Date Eruption Certainty VEI Evidence Activity Area or Unit
0250 ± 150 years Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (uncorrected)
0550 BCE (?) Unknown Confirmed   Radiocarbon (uncorrected)
6140 BCE ± 200 years Unknown Confirmed 4 Radiocarbon (uncorrected)

This compilation of synonyms and subsidiary features may not be comprehensive. Features are organized into four major categories: Cones, Craters, Domes, and Thermal Features. Synonyms of features appear indented below the primary name. In some cases additional feature type, elevation, or location details are provided.


Round Hill


Feature Name Feature Type Elevation Latitude Longitude
Boven Stratovolcano 17° 31' 4" N 62° 59' 52" W
Gilboa Hill Stratovolcano 17° 30' 42" N 62° 59' 13" W
Little Mountain Stratovolcano 17° 30' 20" N 62° 59' 40" W
Mary's Glory Stratovolcano 17° 30' 0" N 62° 59' 20" W
Signal Hill Stratovolcano 17° 29' 42" N 62° 59' 27" W


Feature Name Feature Type Elevation Latitude Longitude
Bergje Dome 17° 30' 29" N 62° ' " W
Sugarloaf Dome 17° 28' 0" N 62° 58' 0" W

Photo Gallery

The Quill stratovolcano (center) forms the SE end of Statia (St. Eustatius) Island. Pleistocene volcanic rocks form the hill at the lower left, and Mount Liamuiga volcano on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) Island rises across the strait at the right center. A steep-sided 760-m-wide crater truncates the summit of The Quill, which was formed about 32,000-22,000 years ago by rhyolitic eruptions on a shallow-water limestone bank. Pyroclastic-flow and -surge deposits, the last of which were erupted about 400 AD, blanket the slopes of the volcano.

Photo by John Shepherd, 2000 (Seismic Research Unit, University of West Indies).

Smithsonian Sample Collections Database

There are no samples for The Quill in the Smithsonian's NMNH Department of Mineral Sciences Rock and Ore collection.

Affiliated Sites

Large Eruptions of The Quill Information about large Quaternary eruptions (VEI >= 4) is cataloged in the Large Magnitude Explosive Volcanic Eruptions (LaMEVE) database of the Volcano Global Risk Identification and Analysis Project (VOGRIPA).
WOVOdat WOVOdat is a database of volcanic unrest; instrumentally and visually recorded changes in seismicity, ground deformation, gas emission, and other parameters from their normal baselines. It is sponsored by the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) and presently hosted at the Earth Observatory of Singapore.
EarthChem EarthChem develops and maintains databases, software, and services that support the preservation, discovery, access and analysis of geochemical data, and facilitate their integration with the broad array of other available earth science parameters. EarthChem is operated by a joint team of disciplinary scientists, data scientists, data managers and information technology developers who are part of the NSF-funded data facility Integrated Earth Data Applications (IEDA). IEDA is a collaborative effort of EarthChem and the Marine Geoscience Data System (MGDS).
MODVOLC - HIGP MODIS Thermal Alert System Using infrared satellite Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data, scientists at the Hawai'i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology, University of Hawai'i, developed an automated system called MODVOLC to map thermal hot-spots in near real time. For each MODIS image, the algorithm automatically scans each 1 km pixel within it to check for high-temperature hot-spots. When one is found the date, time, location, and intensity are recorded. MODIS looks at every square km of the Earth every 48 hours, once during the day and once during the night, and the presence of two MODIS sensors in space allows at least four hot-spot observations every two days. Each day updated global maps are compiled to display the locations of all hot spots detected in the previous 24 hours. There is a drop-down list with volcano names which allow users to 'zoom-in' and examine the distribution of hot-spots at a variety of spatial scales.
MIROVA Middle InfraRed Observation of Volcanic Activity (MIROVA) is a near real time volcanic hot-spot detection system based on the analysis of MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) data. In particular, MIROVA uses the Middle InfraRed Radiation (MIR), measured over target volcanoes, in order to detect, locate and measure the heat radiation sourced from volcanic activity.