Chudic Mines

Chudic Mines


the collective name for ancient mine workings of which traces have been discovered in the USSR. In particular, Chudic mines have been found in the Minusinsk Basin, Western Siberia, and the Urals. The mines were first worked in roughly the first half of the third millennium B.C. The mining was most intensive in the 13th and 12th centuries B.C.; it ceased in the fifth and sixth centuries A.D. in Western Siberia and in the 11th and 12th centuries A.D. in the Central and Northern Urals.

The implements used by the ancient miners in digging the mines included the following: stone hammers, wedges, pestles, and crushers; horn and bone picks; copper, bronze, and (later) iron picks, pickaxes, and hammers; wooden troughs and log ladders; wicker baskets; leather pouches and mittens; and clay lamps. The first step in the working of the mineral deposits was usually the digging of test holes. After reaching a depth of 6–8 m along the dip of a deposit, the miners usually sank funnel-shaped shafts that were slightly inclined and were tapered downward. The miners sometimes excavated adits of small cross section or drove crosscuts through small veins.

The depth of the workings was 10–14 m on the average. Some of the workings were quite large, since ore was mined in them for hundreds of years. For example, an open-pit copper mine near the city of Orsk was 130 m long and 15–20 m wide.


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