Mineral Exploitation III
Artist/Author: Mabe Bethonico
DE RE METALLICA
Published in Germany in 1556, De Re Metallica is a Latin treaty, a landmark in the history of mining and metallurgy. Written by Georgius Agricola (Georg Bauer), it has information on different practices – from detailed technical procedures of extraction to mechanical engineering and ventilation, describing common diseases amongst miners and their treatment. The manual was found in the entry of the mines, bringing information to all users. Along the text more than 270 woodcuts are found. They are scenes with multiple simultaneous works, demonstrating various occupations and methods. According to the author, the images served as reference for readers as much as to maintain the integrity of the information in case written language changed over time. De Re Metallica was used as practical guide for miners and metal workers for 180 years, until the publication of the book by Schlüter, in 1738.
The English translation dates from 1912, done by Herbert Clark Hoover, later president of the United States from 1929 to 1933 and his wife, Lou Henry Hoover.
The images shown in the website are figures extracted from the complex scenes of the book.