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Comptes Rendus Géoscience
Volume 339, n° 9
pages 640-650 (août 2007)
Doi : 10.1016/j.crte.2007.07.006
Received : 2 April 2007 ;  accepted : 3 July 2007
Geological issues in Alberto Fortis' Viaggio in Dalmazia (1774)
Excursions géologiques extraites du Viaggio in Dalmazia d'Alberto Fortis
 

Maša Surić , Robert Lončarić, Anica Čuka, Josip Faričić
Department of Geography, University of Zadar, Ul. dr. F. Tuđmana 24 i, 23000 Zadar, Croatia 

Corresponding author.
Abstract

The Italian abbot Alberto Fortis (1741-1803), educated in geology, petrology, mineralogy, and palaeontology by eminent 18th-century naturalists, performed several extensive explorations in Istria and Dalmatia - provinces of the former Venetian Republic, now the littoral part of Croatia. Notes from some of these journeys, collected in 1774 in the book Viaggio in Dalmazia , encompass observations of almost all aspects of social and physical features of Dalmatian people and land. From a geological point of view, Fortis' remarks generally correspond to recent studies, with some exceptions in palaeontological and petrological issues. His understanding of natural processes, mainly in karstology and hydrology, is mostly surprisingly good. Besides, he addressed critics to previous writers, whose theories, influenced by older authorities, had been taken for granted instead of being re-examined by field explorations. His unjustly neglected work was the first extensive and comprehensive study of this part of Europe, little known in the then scientific community.

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.
Résumé

L'abbé italien Alberto Fortis (1741-1803), instruit en géologie, pétrologie, minéralogie et paléontologie par d'éminents naturalistes du XVIIIe siècle, a mené plusieurs vastes explorations en Istrie et en Dalmatie - provinces de l'ancienne république de Venise, constituant à présent la partie littorale de la Croatie. Les notes écrites au cours de certains de ces voyages, réunies dans le livre Viaggio in Dalmazia , renferment des observations de presque tous les aspects des caractéristiques sociales et physiques de la population du pays. D'un point de vue géologique, les remarques de Fortis correspondent, en général, à des études récentes, avec quelques exceptions en matière de paléontologie et de pétrologie. Sa compréhension des processus naturels, particulièrement en karstologie et en hydrologie, est, la plupart du temps, étonnamment bonne. En outre, il adresse des critiques à des auteurs précurseurs, dont les théories, influencées par d'anciennes autorités, ont été considérées comme admises au lieu d'être repassées au crible de l'examen sur le terrain. Son travail, injustement négligé, a été la première vaste étude d'ensemble de cette partie de l'Europe, alors peu connue au sein de la communauté scientifique.

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

Keywords : Alberto Fortis, Geology, History of sciences, Dalmatia, Croatia

Mots clés : Alberto Fortis, Géologie, Histoire des sciences, Dalmatie, Croatie




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