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The Daily Volcano Quote: sunspots and solar volcanoes 20 March 2009

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From these preceding Particulars, and their Congruity to what we perceive in our own Globe, I cannot forbear to gather, That the Spots on the Sun are caused by the Eruption of some new Vulcano therein; which at first, pouring out a prodigious Quantity of Smoak, and other opacous Matter, causeth the Spots: And as that fulginous Matter decayeth and spendeth itself, and the Vulcano at last becomes more torrid and flaming, so the Spots decay and grow to Umbrae, and at last to Faculae; which Faculae I take to be no other than more flaming brighter Parts than any other Parts of the Sun. These Faculae I have observed never continue long on the Sun: And the Reason I conceive is, because the Vulcano, after its Smoak is over, doth not long emit its Flames, by reason the fiery Pabulum is then near spent, when once it begins to flame: After which the torrid Vulcano soon returneth to the natural Temperature of the Sun, so nearly at least, to escape our Sight, at so vast a Distance as the Sun is from us.

W. Derham, ‘Spots observed in the Sun, from 1703 to 1708’, in Henry Jones (ed.), The Philosophical Transactions (From the Year 1700, to the Year 1720) Abridg’d, and Dispos’d under General Heads (London: W. Innys, &c., 1749), vol. IV, p.238.

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