Georgius Agricola (1494–1555) was a teacher, politician, doctor and physicist, and he prepared the way for the emergence of geology. He reported on his research into minerals in his De natura fossilium (1546). In De re metallica (1556), he discussed the possibilities of mining.
Georgius Agricola Monument in Glauchau, photographer: André Karwath, colour photograph, 2007; image source: Wikimedia Commons, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Georgius_Agricola_memorial_Glauchau_3_%28aka%29.jpg?uselang=de. Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany.