Hey @LilFluff asked questions about my Digging for Pants world too!
There's a great deal of argument re. the genesis of the subsidences.

2 prevailing theories: the "small subsidences" that are recorded as coming (1 mo - ~200 yrs) before The Big Fall were simply early tremors which presaged the Fall.
The subsidences come in very long cycles, but there are smaller subsidences between the long ones; it takes a particular set of circumstances to cause A Big One.

One of the most important discoveries of these digs is one of the least known:

While searching for proof that the people of Hager used magic items to simplify everyday life, Dr. Ruav Blequi discovered a manual which, once translated, read "The Guide to Everything."

Although it is not ACTUALLY a guide to EVERYTHING in the pre-subsidence world, it gave Blequi fodder for several new theories as well as five years of papers & started an industry of replicating pre-subsidance goods.

(sorry, @LilFluff, I got into it and answered the opposite of your question)

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