C1556
 (1560)

A. Furnaces B. Forehearths C. Their- tap holes D. Dipping pots E. Pillars F. Dust chamber G. Window H. Chimneys I. Tub in the coals are washed

Artist:

Georgius Agricola (1494 - 1555)

Rare woodcut from De Re Metallica printed in 1560, which was the the most famous study on all aspects of mining and metallurgy, and one of the first technological books of modern times Some build two furnaces against the wall … Read Full Description

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S/N: DRME-335–194984
(C073)
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Details

Full Title:

A. Furnaces B. Forehearths C. Their- tap holes D. Dipping pots E. Pillars F. Dust chamber G. Window H. Chimneys I. Tub in the coals are washed

Date:

C1556
 (1560)

Artist:

Georgius Agricola (1494 - 1555)

Engraver:

Hans Rudolf Manuel Deutsch 
(fl.1525 – 
1572)

Condition:

In good condition.

Technique:

Woodcut
AUTHENTICITY
A. Furnaces  B. Forehearths C. Their- tap holes D. Dipping pots  E. Pillars F. Dust chamber G. Window H. Chimneys I. Tub in the coals are washed - Antique Print from 1556

Genuine antique
dated:

1560

Description:

Rare woodcut from De Re Metallica printed in 1560, which was the the most famous study on all aspects of mining and metallurgy, and one of the first technological books of modern times

Some build two furnaces against the wall just like those I have described, and above them build a vaulted ceiling supported by the wall and by four pillars. Through holes in the vaulted ceiling the fumes from the furnaces ascend into a dust chamber, similar to the one described before, except that there is a window on each side and there is no door. The smelters, when they have to clear away the flue-dust, mount by the steps at the side of the furnaces, and climb by ladders into the dust chamber through the apertures in the vaulted ceilings over the furnaces. They then remove the flue-dust from everywhere and collect it in baskets, which are passed from one to the other and emptied. This dust chamber differs from the other described, in the fact that the chimneys, of which it has two, are not dissimilar to those of a house; they receive the fumes which, being unable to escape through the upper part of the chamber, are turned back and re-ascend and release the tin; thus the tin set free by the fire and turned to ash, and the little tin-stones which fly up with the fumes, remain in the dust chamber or else adhere to copper plates in the chimney.

Book IX – Furnaces

Biography:

Georgius Agricola (1494-1555)

Agricola was a German Catholic, scholar and scientist. Known as “the father of mineralogy“, he was born at Glauchau in Saxony. His birth name was Georg Pawer (Bauer) and Agricola is the Latinised version of his name, by which he was known his entire adult life. Agricola, studied at Leipzig, Bologna and Padua and became town physician of the mining centre of Joachimsthal in Bohemia and physician at Chemnitz in Saxony from 1534 until his death. Living in mining regions all his life made it possible for him to study mining practices first hand and these direct observations made this series particularly valuable and effective.

The De Re Metallica embraces everything connected with the mining industry and metallurgical processes, including administration, prospecting, the duties of officials and companies and the manufacture of glass, sulphur and alum. The magnificent woodcut illustrations by Hans Rudolf Manuel Deutsch illustrate the different processes involved in mining and include mechanical engineering details such as the use of water-power, hauling, pumps, ventilation, blowing of furnaces and transport of ores.

Agricola made an important contribution to physical geology. He recognized the influence of water and wind on the shaping of the landscape and gave a clear account of of the order of the strata he saw in the mines. Writing on the origin of mountains, he descrivbes the eroding action of water as their cause with a perspicacity much in advance of his time.

The De Re Metallica was frequently reprinted and is said to have reached China in the seventeenth century. Interest in it was revived in the eighteenth century by Abraham Gottlieb Werner, and in 1912 it was translated into English by Herbert Hoover, afterwards President of the United States.

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