Author Archives: admin

Endpapers for a Soft Cover Book

The Guardian recently acknowledged the obsession of some readers for endpapers. These are the colourful patterned pages between the cover and the rest of the book, usually on hardbacks. Although there will not be a hardcover edition of Known Only … Continue reading

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How Diamonds are Formed

In Known Only to Kings, I give a brief description of what we currently believe about how diamonds form. As I said, there is a lot we still don’t know about it, and if we did know more, it would … Continue reading

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The Jewelled Gun of Sultan Mahmud I

Ottoman Sultan Mahmud I came to power mostly by good luck. His predecessor was deposed in a Janissary revolt and Mahmud became a figurehead until the leaders of the revolt became unpopular and a year later they, and 7,000 of … Continue reading

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An Idea to Coat Diamonds with Teflon

I attempted to answer a Quora question about the possibility of coating diamonds with teflon so they would not need to be cleaned so often. I pointed out some possible problems with the idea. But it was certainly creative. It … Continue reading

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My Manila Diary

Here is a compilation of the bulletins I sent to friends when I was living in Manila. I’ve posted them here for those who want to get an idea of what my new series of newsletters will be like. There … Continue reading

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North America’s Biggest Diamond

Dominion Diamond Mines announced what it claims to be the biggest diamond ever found in North America at its 40% owned Diavik Mine. It looks a beauty! 552 carats and no obvious fractures (from what photos I’ve seen). They say … Continue reading

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What I’ve been reading – Fourth Saturday December 2018

This is a regular post I hope to continue every week. It will be a summary of the articles and books I’ve finished reading over the course of the week. It’s an off-topic break from book news and gemstone news. … Continue reading

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Biancabella and the Snake

This is the original translation of Straparola’s story, which I referred to in my book, Known Only to Kings. I leave it here for those who are interested, however I don’t consider it to be suitable for young readers as … Continue reading

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Raw Footage of De Beers Diamond Sorting Rooms

Journeyman Pictures has dumped a quarter hour’s worth of unedited footage of a tour of De Beers’ sorting rooms by a Namibian Prime Ministerial delegation in 2000. It gives a rare look into how they sort rough diamonds by machine … Continue reading

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Diamonds in the Movies – a Select List

Jewellers have a long association with Hollywood. Prestige jewellers began opening branches there in the 1930’s not only to serve the wealthy film stars and producers but also for the influence and recognition their placement of jewellery in the movies … Continue reading

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