Ice is water frozen into the solid state. It can appear transparent or opaque bluish-white color, depending on the presence of impurities or air inclusions. The addition of other materials such as soil may further alter the appearance.
Ice appears in nature in forms of snowflakes, hail, icicles, glaciers, pack ice, frost, and entire polar ice caps. It is an important component of the global climate, and plays an important role in the water cycle. Furthermore, ice has numerous cultural applications, from ice cooling of drinks to winter sports and the art of ice sculpting.
The molecules in solid ice may be arranged in different ways, called phases, depending on the temperature and pressure. Usually ice is the phase known as ice Ih, which is the most abundant of the varying solid phases on the Earth's surface. The most common phase transition to ice Ih occurs when liquid water is cooled below 0°C (273.15K, 32°F) at standard atmospheric pressure. It can also deposit from vapour with no intervening liquid phase, such as in the formation of frost.
The word is derived from Old English īs, which in turn stems from Proto-Germanic isaz.
Famous quotes containing the word ice:
“In entertainment value, the Democratic clambake usually lays it over the Republican conclave like ice cream over parsnips.”
—Walter Wellesley (Red)
“He was high and mighty. But the kindest creature to his slavesand the unfortunate results of his bad ways were not sold, had not to jump over ice blocks. They were kept in full view and provided for handsomely in his will. His wife and daughters in the might of their purity and innocence are supposed never to dream of what is as plain before their eyes as the sunlight, and they play their parts of unsuspecting angels to the letter.”
—Anonymous Antebellum Confederate Women. Previously quoted by Mary Boykin Chesnut in Mary Chesnuts Civil War, edited by C. Vann Woodward (1981)