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THE BOOK

OF

OBJECT LESSONS.

MINERAL KINGDOM.

LESSON I.-COPPER.

I. Description of Appearance, Qualities, 8c. NAME derived from Cyprus, whence the Greeks first obtained it. Latin name, cuprum. Colour, red; lustrous; malleable ; ductile ; a pound can be made to reach over a mile and a quarter ; very sonorous and tenacious ; lightest of metals except iron and tin ; good conductor of heat.

II. Districts producing the Ore.* Found extensively in the British Isles mines situated in Anglesea (Amlwch), Cumberland, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Devon, Cornwall (upwards of eighty; produce, annually, some a hundred, others fifteen hundred tons), Ireland, Isle of Man; Siberia; Spain, Saxony, Russia, Sweden; Morocco, Nigritia; North America (Fahlun), Canada near the lakes Superior and Huron ; Brazil, Chili ; Cuba, Jamaica ; Australia (Burra-Burra), New Zealand.

Every place mentioned in this and the succeeding lessons is to be found upon the map.

*

B

III. Process of Preparation. Ore obtained by mining; removed to the surface, and broken into small pieces; “ best ore" separated from the inferior ; crushed under large hammers or in mills or “grinders" (machines consisting of heavy revolving rollers); passed through sieves ; washed in large cisterns. Sold to the smelters; smelting performed chiefly at Swansea ; fuel cheap and accessible; ready means of export and plentiful supply of a valuable return cargo for vessels bringing the ore. Smelting consists of about ten different processes. The metal produced in various forms

- ingots, slabs, sheets, &c. Devon and Cornwall export the ore to South Wales. Copper is exported from Swansea, London, Liverpool, &c.

IV. Uses to which the Metal is applied. Copper ranks in utility next to iron ; enters largely into our manufactures at Birmingham, Sheffield, and Bristol.

Notice a few of its more common uses.

1. In household utensils -- coppersmiths' goods ; require to be kept very clean ; verdigris injurious to man.

2. For coinage ; copper coins of small value. 3. In making pins ; brass wire.

4. Copper-plates for engraving. Notice the pleasure and enjoyment derived from beautiful prints.

5. Sheathing, fastenings and cables for ships.

6. Boilers for locomotive and other engines ; vats, &c.

7. Useful alloys - bruss (copper and zinc), bronze and bell-metal (copper and tin), pinchbeck and tombac (brass and copper).

V. Statistics.

The Swansea district contains nearly six hundred furnaces ; consuming five hundred thousand tons of coal per annum ; employing four thousand hands ; weekly wages amount to about four thousand pounds. Twenty tons of coal consumed in producing one of copper. Value per ton, from five

ten pounds.

LESSON II.-GOLD.

I. Description of Appearance, Qualities, gc. A PRECIOUS metal; yellow mineral ; very soft ; lustrous ; heavy; exceedingly malleable. (Illustrations : a grain can be beaten out to cover fiftysix square inches, or two and three quarter miles, of silver wire ; the gold of a guinea would reach nine and a half miles if beaten to extreme thinness, or cover eight miles of wire.) A perfect metal ; tenacious ; a good conductor of heat ; insoluble in water; found as an ore, alloyed with copper, silver, and iron; also in alluvial soil, in scales, grains, lumps ; e. g., a lump of twentysix pounds' weight found in Siberia in 1826.

II. Countries where found. Very widely diffused ; e.g., in (a) Europe Hungary, Lead Hills (Scotland), small quantities ; (6) Asia - Ural Mountains, Siberia, Sumatra, Bornéo, Celebes ; (c) Australia - Ballarat, Bendigo, Mount Alexander, The Ovens; (d) Africa -- Mozambique, Zanguebar ; (e) America - Mexico,

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