The Importance Of Glaciers

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Register to read the introduction… Coxe seems to have sufficient knowledge of formation of the chasms and estimating their depth, Bourrit speculates on the cause of the heaps of ice at the bottom of glaciers, and Ramond and Shelley probe extensively into the topic of glacier increase and advancement. Glaciers were likely a feature of great curiosity and fascination because of their unfamiliarity and their active role in nature; the constant shifting and breaking of the ice as well as great cavern and chasm formation would excite those of a scientific and non-scientific background alike. Ramond and Shelley present perspectives on glacier advancement in a tone of active urgency, almost similar to modern theories of global warming and climate change. Glaciers are described in their viewpoint as threatening and violent elements of nature, which are slowly wreaking havoc on the local environment by consuming everything in their pathway as they advance upon the countryside. Although in scientific reality the glaciers were actually only advancing quite slowly, the tone of urgency and the dramatic language presented by Ramond and Shelley would lead one with no background knowledge to assume that glaciers were actively consuming the local landscape and threatening entire communities. The essence of the threat of glacial increase is captured in Ramond's quote "it menaces every communication; the most fruitful pasturages are threatened by its invasions" and Shelley's quote "these glaciers flow perpetually into the valley, ravaging in their slow but irresistible progress the pastures and forests which surround them." The passages would be quite alarming to a reader who wasn't accustomed to the nature and behavior of glaciers, and the severity of the tone makes the perceived threat and impact …show more content…
A Relation of a Journey to the Glaciers in the Dutchy of Savoy. From website by Miall, David. Romantic Travellers. Course Home Page. January 2005-May 2005. Dept. of English, University of Alberta. March 26, 2005 http://www.ualberta.ca/~dmiall/Travel/Glaciers.htm

3) Coxe, William. Sketches of the Natural, Civil, and Political State of Swisserland; in a series of Letters to William Melmoth, Esq. From website by Miall, David. Romantic Travellers. Course Home Page. January 2005-May 2005. Dept. of English, University of Alberta. March 26, 2005. http://www.ualberta.ca/~dmiall/Travel/Coxe-Williams.htm

4) Marshall, William. From A Review of the Landscape, a Didactic Poem, 1795. in The Sublime: A Reader in British 18th Century Aesthetic Theory. Ed. Ashfield, Andrew and de Bolla, Peter. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996.

5) Ramond, M. Observations on the Glaciers. From website by Miall, David. Romantic Travellers. Course Home Page. January 2005-May 2005. Dept. of English, University of Alberta. March 26, 2005.

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