Top Ten Things Not to Do at the Discovery of the World’s Largest Diamond in 1905

 

Rough Cullinan Diamond Wikipedia Image

In 1905 the world’s largest diamond was found on this day, January 25th. It was found in the Premier Mine in Pretoria, South Africa. We all need to go and take a look at this giant rock. Of course, we need to take our list of things not to do so that we don’t cause a tear in the time continuum. So, let’s get in James’s Oldsmobile and head for South Africa. We can wave hello to Robbie Cheadle on the way by.

James’s Oldsmobile from Eternal Road – The final stop

Top Ten Things Not to Do at the Discovery of the World’s Largest Diamond in 1905 by John W. Howell © 2021

10 If you go, do not pick up anything in the mine. If you do, at best, it will be a pebble. At worst, you’ll have your fingers around an uncut diamond. (Right now, the boss of the mine is thinking about turning you upside down, Meblevi. He is wondering how many more you have picked up. By upside down, he means hanging in the elevator shaft by your ankles till everything in your pockets falls out.)

9 If you go, do not ignore Tiny, the WWF champ, when he warns you to stay back behind the line. If you do, at best, Tiny will be looking the other way. At worst, Tiny, who has missed five days of his Prosac medication, will think you are challenging his authority. (Now you’ve done it, Macbeth. You have hurt Tiny’s feelings, and he thinks it is a good idea to hurt yours. He won’t use words, though. That body slam just might fill the bill as far as he is concerned.)

8 If you go, do not brag about giving your financé a one-carat diamond ring. If you do, at best, everyone will stifle their laughs. At worse, you will cause the entire mining company to have fits of laughter until they choke. (The diamond found is 3,106 carats and weighs 1.33 pounds, MacGregor. It’s no wonder you have become the laughing stock of the place. Oh, by the way, the foreman wants to talk to you about the massive work interruption. He doesn’t look pleased either.)

7 If you go, do not mention out loud that you think the name of the diamond, The Cullinan, is silly. If you do, at best, no one is listening to you. At worst, Sir Thomas Cullinan, for whom the diamond is named, will be standing right behind you. (Sir Thomas also owns the mine, MacKenzie. When Fredrick Welles, the mine’s superintendent, discovered the diamond, it was immediately given to Sir Thomas and then named The Cullinan. Looks like Fredrick would like to see you outside. Wonder what he is going to do with that pick?)

6 If you go, do not ask Sir Cullinan what he intends to do with the diamond. If you do, at best, he will ignore you. At worst, you’ll ask in a room full of people. (It seems, X that Sir Cullinan intends to sell the diamond to the Transvaal provincial government of South Africa for £150,000, which is North of £15 million today. (Not everyone will like that idea, Macklin. Now Sir Cullinan will have to figure out what to do with you. Hmmm, they are pouring concrete in shaft number two. I would stay away from there if I were you.)

5 If you go, do not mention your knowledge that the Transvaal government plans to give the diamond to Edward VII of England as a token of esteem. If you do, at best everyone will think it a good idea. At worst, people will get suspicious about where you came up with the information. (Well, MacNab, it looks like your time travel ability might be uncovered. If I were you, I’d just tell everyone you are drunk and laugh it off. Of course, Louis Bofa, the prime minister, is sending some thugs to pick you up.)

4 If you go, do not talk about how the stone was transported to England from South Africa. If you do, at best, most everyone is avoiding you by now. At worst, there is an interested party who is taking notes. (The stone was placed in the captain’s safe and then guarded around the clock on its trip to England. This is the story you told, MacPherson. In actuality, the stone was shipped by regular post. The ship with all the guards was a ruse. It arrived at Buckingham Palace without incident. Lucky for you.)

3 If you go, do not tell the story of King Edward’s reluctance to accept the stone. If you do, at best, you will be locked in a dungeon. At worst, the government will want to know what you know. (Edward wondered if it would be a good idea to accept the stone, Madison. None other than Winston Churchill then the Colonial Undersecretary advised him to take it. As a token, the King gave Winston a replica he displayed proudly on a silver platter.)

2 If you go, do not regale the crowd with tales of how the stone was cut. If you do, at best, no one will believe you. At worst, Abraham Asscher will overhear what you have to say. (It is Abraham was selected by the King to cut the huge stone into several smaller brilliant polished diamonds. ( The task was daunting, Madu. When Abraham went to make the first cut, which would divide the stone in two, his tool broke. The second try was successful, but after the cut, Abraham fainted. He was revived and went on to successfully cut the diamond into smaller pieces over time.)

1 If you go, do not talk about the further cutting of the stone. If you do, at best, folks will think you are bragging. At worst, the mine doctor will take you into a quiet room with padded walls. (The large stone was cut into nine major stones and 96 brilliants, Magni. The two major stones are part of the crown jewels and are kept in the Tower of London. The remainder of six is in possession of Elizabeth II. The major stone is called the Great Star of Africa and is set at the top of the Sovereign’s Sceptre with Cross. The second major stone is called the Second Star of Africa and is set in the Imperial crown. )

Here is a photo of the finished stones.

The nine major stones. Top: Cullinans II, I, and III. Bottom: Cullinans VIII, VI, IV, V, VII, and IX. Wikipedia Image

 

95 comments

  1. Gwen M. Plano · · Reply

    As I read your Ten Things, scenes from the movie Romancing The Stone kept intruding. I suspect you could have written that script. Well done, John. 😃

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I really liked that movie. It did not come to mind while doing the list, but thanks to you I have a nice review of the great scenes in my head. Thanks, Gwen. (You are Joan Wilder? Just a minute)

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Gwen M. Plano · ·

        😂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Yeah, that one carat diamond certainly can’t compare. Great list, John. Happy Monday!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Jill. Have a great week. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Probably shouldn’t mention that the picture makes it look like the side view of a butt too. That could just be me not getting enough sleep though.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Clever name for the second major stone. Oops,I probably shouldn’t have said that. I’m no good at this, John. I should really wait for the movies.

    Interesting history. Amazing what we’ll do for a rock. Oops, there I go again. I hope Tiny didn’t hear that.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I see him looking at you. Might be time to go get some popcorn. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

      1. On my way. Where are those keys?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh shoot. Tiny has them.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. My favorites are # 6 and # 2. I really wish they hadn’t cut it up though – how about I talk Tiny into stealing the diamond so it can remain intact?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think he might go for that idea, GP. Sadly his method of creating a diversion includes grabbing the nearest person and giving them a complimentary flight across the room. Gosh was that you? 😁

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ouch, maybe I’ll quit bugging Tiny……

        Liked by 1 person

      2. As they say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I would keep on.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. The pressure to not screw up the cutting of the diamond must have been as great as the pressure that formed it. No wonder Abraham fainted!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The fainting story has been disputed by family members but if it were me. *thump

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, me, too! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Over 3K carats – I can’t even imagine.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I can’t either, Teri. Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. That is an insanely huge diamond! I would have been sweating bullets as well as fainting had I the task (let’s pretend I had the knowledge) of making that first cut!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Especially if King Henry II gave you the job. Thanks, Dale.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No kidding… I’ll stay back and watch, silently, from the sidelines…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I think I will close my eyes when the blow comes.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Me too!!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Very cool bit of history. Thanks for sharing it with us.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Craig.

      Like

  10. That’s the kind of rock that would give the Titanic nightmares!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Mercy, I’d have loved seeing this!! The uncut version must have been pretty attention-grabbing, but oh, those cut gemstones are eye-popping! Thanks for a cool post this morning, John.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I knew you would like it, Debbie. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Who doesn’t love diamonds?!?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I was thinking about your posts on gems.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. D.L. Finn, Author · · Reply

    I enjoyed this list and learning the diamonds history. Too bad they didn’t leave it uncut.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah, would have made a nice doorstop for sure. 😁 Thanks, Denise

      Liked by 2 people

  13. Suddenly the diamond I bought for Clare when I visited Kimberley looks rather inadequate…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. But think of the love behind it. These stones had none of that.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This is true. Mine was rather small but scores high on colour and quality – and it looks good set in a gold ring.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes. the biggies here have some slight imperfections. Still worth North of $100M for the lot.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. What? All donts and no dos?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. THe title of the post is Ten Things Not to Do. Why put in dos?

      Like

  15. What a creative, fun way to teach us all a few things, John! Thank you:).

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I love history and have always thought it was not taught the right way in school. Thank you, Kristine.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Wow! What a find!! Love this top ten list and all the history, but my favorite by far is the way the diamond was shipped. 🙂 Thanks, John!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. They snuck it twice. Once when it went to England and once when Abraham carried it in his coat when he went back to Belgim to cut it. Both times big boats and guards and fanfair. Thanks, Jan

      Like

  17. What a rock! I like the finished stones too. And even though 1 carat would seem small in comparison, I still think that’s pretty big!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I do too, Barbara.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Great list and history, John. I can’t even imagine a diamond that big. And since I’m not fond of dungeons and rooms with padded walls, my lips are sealed.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good idea, Lauren. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

  19. What an incredible find. I enjoy the reminders of what not to do. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Keeps you out of trouble for sure. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I just love sparkly things, so to be honest, I’m more fond of the cut stones than the one big rock. Still, this has to be the classiest example of breaking big rocks into little ones I’ve ever seen!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I have to agree. The cut stones are beautiful. Thanks, Linda.

      Like

  21. Now I want to see Gentlemen Prefer Blondes again, humming…Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend. Only had them once…diamond studs a gangster I knew bought me that were stolen out of a sublet with locks I stupidly didn’t change. As I figure it, maybe that ice was hot to begin just playing out it’s glistening karma.

    You know John, your prose always makes me think of the darndest things.

    A kiss on the hand
    May be quite continental
    But diamonds are a girl’s best friend…la la la 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m glad thoughts arise out of my scribbles. There can be no greater compliment. The story of karma and your diamonds is fascinating. Hot ice finds it’s own level of heat. Thanks. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Great line John. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you, Susannah. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  22. TYPO…As I figure it, maybe that ice was hot to begin WITH just playing out ITS glistening karma. sigh 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I never noticed. I happen to be the king of typos. Big fingers, small keys. Bound to produce some winners. Also, was raised in Detroit at a time when they stopped teaching phoenetics in grade school. Memorization is not my stong suit so I when I take a guess it is usually wrong. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I fret too much striving for perfection I will never achieve. Should just hang up my Eliza Doolittle and rock on.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hahahaha. I know what you mean. I have finally reached the age where I try my best and know I’m still going to make some. I have done some epic typos in my time.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The good news is, all writers do it. If you look at it that way, you’ll feel part of a club. The Gaffers Club. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. We need a shirt with a little Gaffer’s Club symbol.

        Liked by 1 person

  23. A gem of a post, John. Sharing over on my blog.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Don. A dazzling thought. 😊

      Liked by 2 people

      1. John, you have so many facets.

        Liked by 1 person

  24. Reblogged this on Author Don Massenzio and commented:
    Check out another great top ten list from John Howell with the TOP TEN THINGS NOT TO DO AT THE DISCOVERY OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST DIAMOND IN 1905 from this post on his blog.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Don.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. You’re welcome.

        Liked by 1 person

  25. What a brilliant idea, dear John! The diamond Top Ten Things indeed! 😁

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes i wish I could have one for running the feature. Thanks, Maria.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 😁😁😁 It would be great, dear John!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I could also go for a Aurus Senat limousine. 😁

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Why not? 😂😋

        Liked by 1 person

  26. If was in Abraham’s place, I would have fainted, too. Lotta responsibility there. If the cleave goes the wrong way, you end up with a paperweight. Did Kings still behead people in 1905?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Nope they stopped that. Not sure when but it went out of style. Thanks for the visit, Andrew.

      Like

  27. What a rock! I would have shuddered at the responsibility to either cut or transport the diamond. Churchill was wise to accept the gift. I learned so much here, John. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Jennie

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome, John.

        Liked by 1 person

  28. I always thought the largest diamond ever discovered was called the Hope Diamond. Shows you what I know about diamonds, other than they’re “A girl’s best friend.” 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The Hope diamond is 45.52 carats. Not even close. maybe the fact that it has been around for centuries makes it appear bigger.

      Liked by 1 person

  29. We saw the Cullinan Diamond at the tower of London a few years ago, John. Of course all South Africans know this story in some form or another. Thanks for the shout out. Much appreciated.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I saw it there as well. It is quite a story.😁 I couldn’t talk about SA with out a mention of you.

      Liked by 2 people

  30. And for heaven’s sake, don’t mention the stone is curses!

    Liked by 2 people

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