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Page:A book of folk-lore (1913).djvu/221

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Miners do not like the form of the cross being made underground. A friend of my informant, going through some level or adits, made a X by the side of one, to know his way back, as he would have to return by himself. He was compelled to alter it into another form." This is interesting, as everywhere the Dwarfs are regarded as hostile to Christianity, and are represented in many places as migrating because they cannot endure the sound of church bells calling to prayer. Who first sought out the veins of iron? Who but such as had known where to find it, and what its characteristics were as ore? The natives of the Caucasus were the originators of steel manufacture, but the art was acquired from them by other tribes.

The working in iron, and in consequence to mining for iron, seems in former times, and to a certain extent to the present day, to be specialised in particular tribes. It is so in Africa. There are tribes whose whole energies are devoted thereto. Neighbouring tribes knew nothing about the process. They buy ready-made weapons and tools of these ironworkers.

In Ceylon and India the steel manufacture is confined to certain classes. For the perfecting of a good blade, infinitely hard and