Zinn: eine geologisch-montanistisch-historische Monographie


IN this monograph, as is indicated by the agglutinative adjective on the title-page, the author has collected the results of his studies on the technological history of the metal tin under the threefold head of geology, mining, and history; or rather the reader may do so for himself from the material which is presented in an abrupt fashion without either preface or index. The first part of the volume is devoted to descriptions of the tin-producing districts of Saxony and Bohemia, the geological features of each district being first considered, then its history as derived from the local archives and notices in published chronicles, the whole of the facts concerning production being summed up in a chronicle of tin mining in Bohemia and Saxony, with tabular statements and diagrams of the production from the earliest period for which records are obtainable, about the year 1400, down to the present time. From these we gather that the total production of both countries, which was about 100 tons in the year 1400, reached in 1500 a maximum of about 1000 tons, since which time it has steadily declined, the produce at intervals of fifty years varying from 75 to 125 tons annually. At the present time the production is practically confined to Altenberg in Saxony, where about 50 tons are obtained from the treatment of a staminiferous granite containing about 8 lbs. of tin ore per ton. In subsequent sections of the volume the productions of Cornwall, Banca, and Australia are treated in a similar manner; a descriptive sketch of the geology of each locality being given in each case, followed by a chronicle of events and prices. These being mainly compiled from well-known sources, such as De la Bêche's “Cornwall and Devon,” Von Diest's “Banca,” the reports issued by the Australian and Tasmanian Colonial Governments, &c., present less of novelty than the first part, which contains much original matter derived from the author's own investigations; but the skilful manner in which the information is presented is likely to render the volume very useful to those interested in the subject. An unnecessary difficulty has been introduced by the adoption of the new-fashioned phonetic system of spelling which has latterly become prevalent in Berlin, and will doubtless prove a puzzle to many readers.

Zinn: eine geologisch-montanistisch-historische Monographie.

Von E. Reyer. 8vo. (Berlin: Reimer, 1881.)

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B., H. Zinn: eine geologisch-montanistisch-historische Monographie . Nature 24, 507 (1881). https://doi.org/10.1038/024507a0

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