THE DISCOVERER OF TIN
BY an anachronism of fifteen hundred years or more, of Perran was considered as the person who first found tin; and this conviction induced the miners to celebrate his day, the 5th of March, with so much hilarity, that any one unable to guide himself along the road has received the appellation of a Perraner; and that, again, has most unjustly reflected as a habit on the saint.
"It may here be worthy of remark, that, as the miners impute the discovery of tin to St Perran, so they ascribe its reduction from the ore, in a large way, to an imaginary person, St Chiwidden; but chi-wadden is white house, and must, therefore, mean a smelting or blowing-house, where the black ore of tin is converted into a white metal.
"A white cross on a black ground was formerly the banner of St Perran, and the standard of Cornwall; probably with some allusion to the black ore and the white metal of tin. "-- Gilberl.
A college, dedicated to St Perran, once stood in the parish of St Kevern (Dugdale's "Monasticon," vol vi. p. 1449). This probably had some connection' with Perran Uthnoe. The shrine of St Perran was in that parish, which is said to have contained his head, and other relics.
Lysons quotes a deed in the registry of Exeter, showing the great resort of pilgrims hither in 1485.
In the will of Sir John Arundell, 1433, occurs this bequest:-- " Item, lego ad usum parochie S'c'i' Pyerani in Zabulo, ad clandendum capud S. Pierani honorificè et meliori modo quo sciunt xls. "-- Collecetanea Topogr. el Geneal., vol. iii. p. 392.
For a full examination of the question, Did the Phoenicians trade with Britain for tin? the following works should be consulted :--" History of Maritime and Inland Discovery," by W. D. Cooley; "Historical Survey of the Astronomy of the Ancients," by Sir George Cornewall Lewis; "Commerce and Navigation of the Ancients," by W. Vincent, D.D.; "Phoeanicia," by John Kenrick, M. A. ;. "The Cassiterides: an Inquiry into the Commercial Operations of the Phcenicians in Western Europe, with Particular Reference to the British Tin Trade," by George Smith, LL.D., F.A.S.