Cornish Mining and the World Heritage Site
"Hast ever seen a mine? Hast ever been
Down it in its fabled grottoes, walled with gems,
And canopied with torrid mineral belts,
That blaze within the fiery orifice?
Hast ever, by the glimmer of a lamp,
Or the fast waning taper, gone down, down,
Towards the earth's dread centre, where wise men
Have told us that the earthquake is conceived,
And great Vesuvius hath his lava-house,
Which burns and burns forever, shooting forth
As from a fountain of eternal fire?
Hast ever heard, within this prison house,
The startling hoof of fear? the eternal flow
Of some dread meaning whispering to thy soul?"
(John Harris, Miner and Poet; from "The Mining Scene" - c1853)