Book VI: Mining Equipment

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Our people give the name of water-bags to those very large skins for
carrying water which are made of two, or two and a half, ox-hides. When
these water-bags have undergone much wear and use, first the hair comes
off them and they become bald and shining ; after this they become
torn. If the tear is but a small one, a piece of smooth notched stick is put
into the broken part, and the broken bag is bound into its notches on either
side and sewn together ; but if it is a large one, they mend it with a piece of
ox-hide. The water-bags are fixed to the hook of a drawing-chain and let
down and dipped into the water, and as soon as they are filled they are drawn
up by the largest machine. They are of two kinds ; the one kind take in the
water by themselves ; the water pours into the other kind when it is pushed
in a certain way by a wooden shovel.
When the water has been drawn out from the shafts, it is run off in
troughs, or into a hopper, through which it runs into the trough. Likewise
the water which flows along the sides of the tunnels is carried off in drains.
These are composed of two hollowed beams joined firmly together, so as to
hold the water which flows through them, and they are covered by planks
all along their course, from the mouth of the tunnel right up to the extreme
end of it, to prevent earth or rock falling into them and obstructing the flow
of the water. If much mud gradually settles in them the planks are raised
and the drains are cleaned out, for they would otherwise become stopped up
and obstructed by this accident. With regard to the trough lying above
Book VI: Mining Equipment Page of 673 Book VI: Mining Equipment
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