Page:A tour through the northern counties of England, and the borders of Scotland - Volume I.djvu/193

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was worked, for the purpose of bringing out the ore. As we proceeded slowly along the current, impelled by our guide, who gave motion to the boat by pushing against some pegs driven into the wall for that purpose, we began to contemplate this great example of man's labour, and at the same time to lament, that it had been exerted in vain. This level, it seems, was undertaken by a company of speculators about five and twenty years ago, who drove it into the heart of the mountain three thousand seven hundred and fifty feet, at an expence of 14,000l. by the ceaseless labour of six men and three boys, who were employed upon it eleven whole years, at a contract of five guineas per yard. The veins, however, which the level intersected, were not sufficiently rich to answer the expence of pursuing them after they were found; therefore, having followed their speculation for ten years, they were obliged to relinquish it, and content themselves with letting the level to a man at 10l. per annum; who took it in order to gratify strangers with a sight of this subterraneous wonder. Whilst employed in putting questions to our conductor on the subject before us, our attention was excited by a distant murmur, which gradually increased upon the ear, and at length swelled into a stunning noise, exceeding the loudest