Multi-proxy data from an Italian stalagmite constrain the commencement of full Last Interglacial conditions in southern Europe at 129 ± 1 ka, consistent with absolutely dated records currently available from both hemispheres. The post-glacial transition towards warmer and wetter conditions commenced at 134 ± 2 ka. Oxygen isotope evidence suggests this was interrupted briefly at 130 ± 2 ka, an event probably related to the 'Termination II pause' associated with Heinrich Event 11. For most of the stalagmite, the pattern of δ 18O variation mimics the air temperature record from the Vostok ice core, especially through marine isotope stage 5. There is no obvious evidence for substantial 'early interglacial' warming. Copyright 2005 by the American Geophysical Union.