[Tidbits] The Map and the Sapphire

It’s the dawn of time. Mists hang heavily over the wooded land. A
great hunter wields his club and gestures. They do not understand.
He sees a mammoth in the distance. He walks over and smashes the
creature’s skull and wrenches loose one tusk. The hunter is quite
strong. He is beautiful. His crooked nose … his dripping infected
eye … front teeth missing from an earlier encounter with a saber-
tooth … his wife can not take her eyes off of him. He lugs back
the tusk and begins to inscribe upon it with a piece of rock. They
watch him. They see the river … the trees … the canyon … and
the herd of oxen. They understand. The hunter has shown them where
the food is. He has made the first map … similar to the one found
in the Ukraine in 1966 which dates back some twelve thousand years.

According to Persian lore … the world rests upon a giant sapphire
which reflects upon the sky causing the blue coloration of the
heavens. Quick … by a show of hands … how many of you naively
thought the blue came from the color of oxygen? Amazing–is it not–
how modern technology and human enlightenment befuddles the mind and
clouds the senses into a dreamlike belief that magic and lore are
nothing more than mere bagatelles of unimportance when compared to
the noble gravity of science. But I digress. So … from the great
warrior of the stone age to the myth of the color of the sky … I
bring you the Kashmir Sapphire … the finest of the fine in
coloration. And not only will I show you a sapphire from Kashmir …
I will also show you an ancient map in order to better enable those
of you in quest of impossible dreams to go a sapphire-huntin’.
If–at the end of your quest–you don’t find that sapphire of your
dreams … I accept no responsibility … it is you who were remiss
in your efforts. On the other hand … should you find one … I
get ten percent of the proceeds for having shown you the way. Fair?

You are all surely wondering how the first Kashmir sapphire was
discovered. You might even venture forth with original utterance and
say: Hey … Benjamin … how was the first Kashmir sapphire
discovered? Permit me to retort. The year:1880. We’re on the
southwest slopes of the Zanskar mountains. There’s a rumble. The air
vibrates with danger. Landslide! And when it’s over … sapphires
appear … of such hue and color as had never before been seen. The
maharajah of Kashmir recognizes a good thing when he sees one. He
controls trade … he sends military troops to control the mines.
Which brings forth the old adage: Where there’s money … there’s
the military. Or something like that.

About the sapphire. 138.35 carats. Kashmir origin. No indication of
thermal treatment. No value given. Is it the greatest … the
biggest … the best? Nay nay sweet boids of yute. There’s one
weighing around 548 carats which resides in the Green Vault in
Dresden. It is known as “Peter the Great’s Nose”. I can not even
begin to guess at the reason for this quaint moniker … and so I
shall not try. I do-- however–extend an invitation to one and all to
venture an answer to this conundrum and email me your guesses. So
why … you all may well ask again … why am I showing you this
sapphire? Well … the answer is simplicity itself. It’s the one for
which I have an image. Additionally … not only do I not have an
image of Peter the Great’s Nose … it is also not a sapphire from
Kashmir. And so … like Cyrano … I end my refrain.

For those of you who are new to this thing called Tidbits…may I
direct you to my home page at www.tyler-adam.com where you will
scroll down the left side menu till you get to the area that says
Tidbits Graphics … and then click on the link that says: Kashmir
… where you’ll see an image of the sapphire … and an image of an
ancient map that may well guide you along the back roads to insane

And there ya have it.
That’s it for this week folks.
Catch you all next week.
Benjamin Mark