I left the train again at Camborne, for a walk among the mines. A town with a thriving look; its temporary features vanishing into the outskirts. Before you are clear of the houses you hear the vigorous noises of mining industry; and for miles around the face of the country is cut up by mining-works. But all is not barren: gardens, plantations, and parks are interspersed, appearing the more verdurous by the contrast. At the village of Tuckingmill you see a remarkably pretty church, and an air of rurality; but once up the ascent beyond, and the crowd of mines is greater. Now Carn Brea Hill comes into view on the right. Another mile ; then taking one of the numerous by-lanes, you cross a region of red and gray soil, cut up by tramways, covered by sheds and machinery, where labour appears to be much more a task than an employment; and scrambling on as best you can, you arrive presently on the furzy side of the hill. Steer for the summit: it is steep, and seven hundred and fifty feet high. In any other place its aspect would be thought surly; but here its brakes and tangle, and patches of coarse grass, look beautiful by contrast; and you may imagine the hill to be a perpetual lesson to the neighbourhood. Every year

the tender herb sprouts anew, the gorse renews its golden blossoms, and the ferns expand their graceful fronds: things of beauty for human eyes to look on if they will.

Most obtrusive on the top is the tall monument erected in memory of Lord de Dunstanville; but most remarkable are the old castle, and the huge boulders, that look as if they scarcely belonged to the spot. Pebbles forty feet long and twenty in girth. One mass resembles a whale somewhat compressed; and

other strange shapes lie around, and rock-basins in all stages of formation. No wonder Borlase saw here the chief of Druidical high-places! To quote our rhymester once more: “ Be thou thy mother Nature's work, or proof of giant's might? Worthlesse and ragged though thou show, yet art thou worth the

sight." The castle, which stands at the end towards Redruth, is one of those rude undeveloped structures such as a reiving Johnstone might have built. It is so placed among the lumps of granite, that while one corner has only one storey, the other has three.

But the prospect ! It is “goodly” only in the money-making sense; and perhaps not always in that. All round the horizon, except where the Bristol Channel comes in-mines. A hungry landscape, everywhere deformed by small mountains of many-coloured refuse; traversed in all directions by narrow paths and winding roads, by streams of foul water, by screaming locomotives with hurrying trains; while wheels and whims, and miles of pumping-rods, whirling and vibrating, and the forest of tall beams, make up an astonishing maze of machinery and motion. Giant arms of steam-engines swing up and down; and the stamping-mills appear to try which can thunder loudest, proclaiming afar the progress made in disembowelling the bountiful old earth.

And the population by whom all this is accomplished. Though in the main they answer to my friend the Geologist's description, " a rough lot,” you will see, as you saw in the market-place at Truro, a marked difference between miners and field-labourers. The intelligence gleaming in their eyes, and their general expression,

denote a habit of thinking for themselves, as you will find by their shrewd remarks, if you get into talk with them. In daily conflict with rude circumstances, their native resources are developed and multiplied. Their ingenuity is manifest in the numerous improvements they have made in their tools and machinery. They will pierce a shaft in two or three different divisions: one party working from the surface, another from one of the uppermost galleries, and a third from the deeper workings, and, when complete, the several portions of the shaft shall all meet in a true perpendicular. Their risks are great. According to Dr. Barham, one-half of the miners die of consumption between the ages of thirty-five and fifty. Some are killed every year by falling from the ladders in their ascent or descent; and numbers maimed by the daily blastings, in which the county explodes three hundred tons of gunpowder annually. In Gwennap the deaths by violence are one in five. In Union Mine, in the same parish, one of the levels could only be worked when the wind was south, or south-east; but the instant a change occurred at the surface the men had to fly for their lives, to escape a deadly gas that then issued from the fissures of the rock. The evil was at length cured by a communication with the shaft. The temperature at the bottom of the United Mines was recently 104°; and in this the miners had to work. A stream of water at 98° ran through the same level; and an attempt was made to mitigate the heat by sending in at a few yards' distance a fall of cold water, which lowered the temperature near it fourteen degrees. The men, who worked naked, would rush from the end of the level, stand for a minute or two under the cold torrent, and then back to their labour again. To climb three hundred fathoms of ladders after such exhaustion must be terrible. But in Fowey Consols, the United, and Trevasean Mines, “man-machines" have been introduced: platforms affixed to rods which rise or fall twelve feet at every stroke of the engine, and carry the men up or down without


exertion on their part but that of stepping from one platform to another as they meet. To descend 1700 feet requires twenty-five minutes. Saved from the fatigue of climbing, the men can work below for eight hours at a spell instead of six hours, as before; and they will walk a long distance underground to go up by the machine. What the underground distances are may be judged of by the Consolidated Mines, 1800 feet deep and two miles in length; in which, from 1820 to 1840, sixtythree miles of gallery were sunk and driven for the mere purpose of discovery, at a cost of 300,0001. Some asthmatic miners prefer the deepest mines, as their complaint is temporarily relieved by the additional dose of oxygen contained in the air at great depths.

Formerly no one would have thought it profitable to work a lode for copper in granite ; now one of the best copper-mines in Cornwall, Trevasean, is entirely in the granite. Tin and copper rarely occur together in the same vein; sometimes tin is first met with, and worked for a while, till it disappears. The miners then following in search, come upon copper, which may give them employment for years. Occasionally the tin continues for a considerable depth; and in some instances a vein of copper is met with, breaking through and pushing it out of its course. In Carn Brea Mine a lode was once abandoned as unprofitable, being diminished to a mere

pany me.

thread, so closely did the walls of rock “wring up," or approach each other ; but after a time, the excavations having been continued, the ore was found to thicken and expand into a vein that well repaid the adventurers. An interesting chapter might be written about such mining chances.

From Carn Brea Castle you see Redruth, and a track leading down to the road. The railway crosses to the town on a lofty timbered viaduct, the Station is on the top of a steep hill, and one-half of the houses look down on the other half. I stayed to drink a glass of ale with my crust, and the landlord of the house, hearing me inquire for Gwennap Pit, offered to accom

He was going with an old friend of his to a funeral at St. Day, and it would not be “out of their way to speak of” to go round by the amphitheatre. They would soon be ready; and presently they appeared, dressed in glossy black.

We walked slowly up the hill, for the afternoon was warm, talking as we went. The landlord took up the autobiographical vein: “I was a miner myself once, he said, " and worked underground for many a year; part of the time in Mexico. A dead take-in some of them Mexican mines. Two of my boys are settled in America, and doing well. I have been over once to see them, and mean to go again. I didn't take on with the drink as some do, and in time I saved money enough to take the house there in Redruth; and now I'm as comfortable as I'd wish to be."

Mines everywhere in sight again when we came to the top of the hill; some indicated by abandoned mounds of rubbish: monuments of ruin. that?” continued the host, pointing to a stony patch of


you see

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