1,100 Rhenish guldens, were distributed to each one hundred and twenty-eighth
share. From the Annaberg mine which is known as the Himmelich Höz,
they had a dole of eight hundred thaler ; from a mine in Joachimsthal
which is named the Sternen, three hundred thaler ; from the head mine at
Abertham, which is called St. Lorentz, two hundred and twenty-five thaler12.
The more shares of which any individual is owner the more profits he takes.
I will now explain how the owners may lose or obtain the right over a
mine, or a tunnel, or a share. Formerly, if anyone was able to prove by
witnesses that the owners had failed to send miners for three continuous
shifts13, the Bergmeister deprived them of their right over the mine, and
gave the right over it to the informer, if he desired it. But although miners
preserve this custom to-day, still mining share owners who have paid
their contributions do not lose their right over their mines against their will.
Formerly, if water which had not been drawn off from the higher shaft of
some mine percolated through a vein or stringer into the shaft of another
mine and impeded their work, then the owners of the mine which suffered
the damage went to the Bergmeister and complained of the loss, and he sent
to the shafts two Jurors. If they found that matters were as claimed,
the right over the mine which caused the injury was given to the owners
who suffered the injury. But this custom in certain places has been changed,
for the Bergmeister, if he finds this condition of things proved in the case
of two shafts, orders the owners of the shaft which causes the injury to
contribute part of the expense to the owners of the shaft which receives the
injury ; if they fail to do so, he then deprives them of their right over their
mine ; on the other hand, if the owners send men to the workings to dig
and draw off the water from the shafts, they keep their right over their
mine. Formerly owners used to obtain a right over any tunnel, firstly, if
in its bottom they made drains and cleansed them of mud and sand so that
the water might flow out without any hindrance, and restored those drains
which had been damaged ; secondly, if they provided shafts or openings to
supply the miners with air, and restored those which had fallen in ; and
finally, if three miners were employed continuously in driving the tunnel.
But the principal reason for losing the title to a tunnel was that for a period
of eight days no miner was employed upon it ; therefore, when anyone
was able to prove by witnesses that the owners of a tunnel had not done
these things, he brought his accusation before the Bergmeister, who, after
going out from the town to the tunnel and inspecting the drains and the
ventilating machines and everything else, and finding the charge to be true,
placed the witness under oath, and asked him : " Whose tunnel is this at the
present time ? " The witness would reply : " The King's " or " The
"See Note 9, p. 74, for further information with regard to these mines. The Rhenish
gulden was about 6.9 shillings, or $1.66. Silver was worth about this amount per Troy
ounce at this period, so that roughly, silver of a value of 1,100 gulden would be about 1,100
Troy ounces. The Saxon thaler was worth about 4.64 shillings or about $1.11. The thaler,
therefore, represented about .65 Troy ounces of silver, so that 300 thalers were about
195 Troy ounces, and 225 thalers about 146 Troy ounces.
wOpera continens. The Glossary gives schickt,—the origin of the English "shift."