Georgius Agricola (1494-1555)



Georg Agricola was a German scholar of the sixteenth century who was later dubbed the "father of mineralogy." Agricola studied physics, philology, philosophy, medicine, and chemistry and was able to apply his various intellectual capabilities to a comprehensive study of the mining industry in Saxony. His 1556 publication, De re metallica libre xii, is a complete and systematic treatise on mining and metallurgy, illustrated with interesting woodcuts and containing, in an appendix, the German equivalents for the technical terms used in the Latin text. It long remained a standard work, and marks its author as one of the most accomplished chemists of his time. Chemists used De re metallica libre xii as a catalog of minerals and their properties.