THE DIAMOND MARKET
preceding chapters the extraction of the blue ground and the winning of
the precious stones have been fully described. It remains to trace the
handling of the diamonds from this point until they reach the hands of
the jewellers and are spread broadcast in glittering array over the
face of the world, or applied to uses less showy than adornment. After
the diamonds are separated and collected at the Pul-sator, they are
cleaned and sent under guard t6 the diamond office, which is in the
general offices of the Company. Here the crystals are boiled in a
mixture of nitric and sulphuric acid to remove any particles of earth
which may adhere to them. They are then thoroughly rinsed with clear
water to get rid of the acids, and finally washed in alcohol and spread
out on tables to dry. The alcohol seems to clean the diamonds and
leaves them brighter than when water alone is used.
daily productions of diamonds are put away in parcels until there is an
accumulation of about 50,000 carats of De Beers and Kimberley diamonds.
The diamonds from these two mines are mixed and are known locally as "
pool goods." When the requisite quantity is at hand, the mixed stones
are screened to grade the sizes, after first taking out the larger
diamonds by hand. They are then ready to pass to the hands of the
sorters, who separate and classify them for accurate valuation. The
chief classifications in use are —
Close goods. 2. Spotted stones. 3. Rejection cleavage. 4. Fine
cleavage. 5. Light-brown cleavage. 6. Ordinary and rejection cleavage.
7. Flats. 8. Maacles. 9. Rubbish. 10. Boar<\