This book deals with the industry that forged the modern world. Throughout history metals and raw materials have underpinned human activity. So it is that the industry responsible for extracting these materials from the ground - mining - has been ever present throughout the history of civilisation, from the ancient world of the Egyptians and Romans, to the industrial revolution and the British Empire, and through to the present day, with mining firms well represented on the world's most important stock indexes including the FTSE100. This book traces the history of mining from those early moments when man first started using tools to the present day where metals continue to underpin economic activity in the post industrial age. In doing so, the history of mining methods, important events, technological developments, the important firms and the sparkling personalities that built the industry are examined in detail. At every stage, as the history of mining is traced from 40,000BC to the present day, the level of detail increases in accordance with the greater social and industrial developments that have played out as time has progressed. This means that a particular focus is given to the period since the industrial revolution and especially the 20th century. A look is also taken into the future in an effort to chart the direction this great industry might take in years to come. Many books have been written about mining; the majority have focused on a particular metal, geographical area, mining event or mining personality, but "The History of Mining" has a broader scope and covers all of these essential and fascinating areas in one definitive volume.