C1556
 (1560)

A. Furnace B. Ladder C. Board fixed to it. D. Hoe E. Five-toothed rake F. Wooden spatula G. Broom H. Hammer I. Rammer, same diametre K. Two wooden spatulas L. Curved blade M. Bronzed rammer N. Another bronze rammer O. Wide spatula P. Rod Q. Wicker basket

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.  In a similar manner, mixed and moistened … Read Full Description

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S/N: DRME-308–194957
(C073)
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Full Title:

A. Furnace B. Ladder C. Board fixed to it. D. Hoe E. Five-toothed rake F. Wooden spatula G. Broom H. Hammer I. Rammer, same diametre K. Two wooden spatulas L. Curved blade M. Bronzed rammer N. Another bronze rammer O. Wide spatula P. Rod Q. Wicker basket

Date:

C1556
 (1560)

Artist:

Georgius Agricola (1494 - 1555)

Engraver:

Hans Rudolf Manuel Deutsch 
(fl.1525 – 
1572)

Condition:

In good condition.

Technique:

Woodcut
AUTHENTICITY
A. Furnace B. Ladder C. Board fixed to it. D. Hoe E. Five-toothed rake F. Wooden spatula  G. Broom H. Hammer I. Rammer, same diametre K. Two wooden spatulas L. Curved blade M. Bronzed rammer N. Another bronze rammer O. Wide spatula P. Rod Q. Wicker basket - 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.

 In a similar manner, mixed and moistened powder is thrown and pounded with a rammer in the forehearth pit, which is outside the furnace. When this is nearly completed, powder is again put in, and pushed with the rammer up toward the protruding copper pipe, so that from a point a digit under the mouth of the copper pipe the hearth slopes down into the crucible of the fore-hearth,” and the metal can run down. The same is repeated until the forehearth pit is full, then afterward this is hollowed out with a curved blade; this blade is of iron, two palms and as many digits long, three digits wide, blunt at the top and sharp at the bottom. The crucible of the forehearth must be round, a foot in diameter and two palms deep if it has to contain a centumpondium of lead, or if only seventy librae, then three palms in diameter and two palms deep like the other. When the forehearth has been hollowed out it is pounded with a round bronze rammer. This is five digits high and the same in diameter, having a curved round handle one and a half digits thick; or else another bronze rammer is used, which is fashioned in the shape of a cone, truncated at the top, on which is imposed another cut away at the bottom, so that the middle part of the rammer may be grasped by the hand; this is six digits high, and five digits in diameter at the lower end and four at the top. Some use in its place a wooden spatula two and a half palms wide at the lower end and one palm thick.

BOOK IX – Smelting Ores

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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