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Ch. 3: Diamond

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DIAMOND
MINES OF INDIA.
55
The accepted diamond countries of history and commerce are India, Brazil, and South Africa.
DIAMOND MINES OF INDIA.
First of all, for size and beauty, the Indian dia­monds are famed: "diamonds of Golconda" have become a synonym for preciousness and brilliancy. These gems were brought, not from the immediate vicinity of the fortress of Golconda, but from the mines of Raolconda and other localities situated in the territory of the Golconda kings. The mines were many years ago ceded to the English, but they have long since been abandoned; and it is believed that they are exhausted. Their treasures, however, shine in the coronets of every nation of the globe.
Diamond localities are numerous in Hindostan, and in Borneo, whose "Landak" diamonds have been especially prized; but many of these localities have ceased to be productive, and their names are becoming obsolete. In Tavernier's time the Gol­conda mines employed 60,000 people, and had already proved so rich that, as Ferishta records, the Sultan Mahmoud (a.d. 1177-1206) left in his treasury more than four hundred pounds weight of these precious gems.
It is from the descriptions of Tavernier, a
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