The effects of radiation damage on bulk laser-induced damage in SiO/sub 2/ were investigated. Samples studied included Spectrasil A, B, and WF (water free). Measurements of laser-induced breakdown were conducted with 532 and 1064 nm laser pulses of approximately 20 ns duration. Reductions of up to 40% in the laser-induced breakdown threshold were observed at 532 nm for samples exposed to 10/sup 8/ rad of ..gamma..-radiation. The decrease in breakdown threshold for irradiated SiO/sub 2/ samples at 532 nm was found to be proportional to the linear absorption of the specimen at 266 nm. These results are in good agreement with a proposed model which suggests that two-photon absorption initiated avalanche process is responsible for laser-induced breakdown for these materials.