THERE are many mountains throughout the world which, because of their size and loftiness, their marvellous and diverse characteristics and appearance, are extolled by great writers in different accounts for various reasons: such are Vesuvius, Etna, Campanus, 1 and others, whose names are mostly familiar from the individual descriptions of these men. No mountains, however, are more constantly remembered by Northerners than those of Spain, which in times past well-born and distinguished people, and also those of lower class, traversed with great hardship on their pilgrimage to Compostella, praising to the skies the splendid guest-houses of the kings, since here they were welcomed in a most hospitable manner and were excellently refreshed. In Germany, too, are found huge and wonderful mountains, no less remarkable for their height and size than for their unique properties. An amazing feature reported about Vesuvius is that it often emits a sound not unlike bellowing; generally, when this happens, it is reckoned to be caused by the prodigious force through which ash is expelled. An eruption very similar to that of Mount Vesuvius is the one which Jerome says occurred in the first year of Titus’s reign; it belched out so much fire and started such a blaze that it burnt up woods, fields, meadows, and all the countryside around. 2

Vesuvius Campanus

Splendid guest-houses of Spaniards

Bellowing of mountain