XXX Letter to the Grand Duke Cosimo III on the Grottos Above Moncodeno
The grotto of Moncodeno exceeded my greatest expectations. It presented characteristics which I had never read about in other writings, and which have never occurred to me on any other occasion. Here, too, I was able to confirm by observation the view I had begun to form by a process of reason in the grotto of Gresta. The most important characteristics are those to be seen in the ice formation, so completely different from anything I have ever seen. In some parts there is such similarity to a crystal, that I am not surprised at the opinion held by many that crystals are petrified ice. Here is a similarity, not only in transparency, but also in shape. If it were not for two experiences which I have had, I could easily be persuaded to the same opinion by such phenomena. The first experience is of a negative kind, viz. that I have not heard of a crystal being found in the ice of one of these grottos. The second is positive, viz. that you can find crystal in places where there is no ice at the end of the year, in fact, even in places where there is never ice.
KeywordsRock Mass Melted Snow Great Expectation Small Column Good Nature
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