A Letter to William Hooson, a Derbyshire Miner

Name of traveller

Diederich Wessel Linden (active 1745-1768)

Reason for travel

  • inspection of mines

Date of travel

undated, ca. mid-1740s

[F]or as often as I go from [Holywell] to Baggilt and Flint, I am so often surpriz'd to see what vast Quantities of Metal is thrown away along with the Sleek out of the Smelting-Houses. This, perhaps, at first, will seem incredible to those that think you have so many knowing and skillful People in the Way of Smelting, that live betwixt [Holywell] and Flint; but I assert nothing but Truth . . .. (Linden 29-30)


  • industry:
    • describes mining industry in Wales as being still in its infancy and much of the mined ore goes to waste during the smelting process
    • reference of George Wynne's (1700-1756) ore mine at Halkyn
    • comparisons between Wales and the mining tradition in Germany
    • notes existence of various types of lead ore in Flintshire
    • export of Flintshire ore to the Netherlands for smelting to produce silver and lead of good quality
    • notes miners suffering from damp conditions in the mines and proposes the use of explosives as counter-measure
  • language: has received help from his friend, Thomas Gotham, in composing this public letter in English
  • literature: compare with a later series of letters about mining and smelting in north Wales
  • click here to read the full account

Nationality of traveller


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Type of publication



Linden, Diederic[h] Wessel. A Letter to William Hooson, a Derbyshire Miner: Shewing the Mistakes, and Errors, Commited in His Lately Publish'd Miners (sic) Dictionary. With a Preface Setting forth the Reasons for Making the Said Publick. Chester: J. Page, 1747. Print.