forms are always identical, in the small as well as in the large crystals.
mineral was known to the ancients. Much esteemed by the Greeks on
account of its purity and regularity of formation, they made it the
symbol of modesty, loyalty, and sincerity. Homer, Thucydides, and
Plutarch declared their belief that it was water congealed by time into
crystal. Aristotle confirmed this supposition, saying : " Ex aqua
generatur crystallus remoto totaliter calido."
ancient works in rock crystal are of beautiful designs. In Imperial
Rorne vases of this substance were valued very highly. Nero, when
forced to fly, broke one immense vase, on which was engraved the story
of the Iliad.
crystal offered to the Italians of the Middle Ages a very extended
industry, to which art lent additional value. The works executed on
this mineral in the fourteenth and seventeenth centuries followed,
according to the times, the taste prevalent in other arts of design.
At present, the manufacture of artificial crystal has reduced that
industry to nothing, having substituted one on a larger scale, which
is practised not only by Italians, but by almost all civilized nations.