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Concentration of Salt

This should prevent any surprise that rivers of such magnitude and rapidity, flowing perpetually instead of intermittently, should produce these effects and end by filling up the Pontus. For it is not a mere probability, but a logical certainty, that this must happen. And a proof of what is going to take place is this, that in the same proportion as the Maeotic lake is less salt than the Pontus, the Pontus is less so than the Mediterranean. From which it is manifest that, when the time which it has taken for the Maeotic lake to fill up shall have been extended in proportion to the excess of the Pontic over the Maeotic basin, then the Pontus will also become like a marsh and lake, and filled with fresh water like the Maeotic lake: nay, we must suppose that the process will be somewhat more rapid, insomuch as the rivers falling into it are more numerous and more rapid. I have said thus much in answer to the incredulity of those who cannot believe that the Pontus is actually being silted up, and will some day be filled; and that so vast a sea will ever become a lake or marsh. But I have another and higher object also in thus speaking: which is to prevent our ignorance from forcing us to give a childish credence to every traveller's tale and marvel related by voyagers; and that, by possessing certain indications of the truth, we may be enabled by them to test the truth or falsehood of anything alleged by this or that person.

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    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), PROPONTIS
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