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of brilliants, in which the upper pyra- then hanged himself for remorse. The mid is a real diamond, and the lower diamond was purchased from Pitt by a piece of some inferior stone, cemented the Regent of France, for 135,0001. It to it; the whole being set so as to hide weighed 410 carats in its rough state, the junction. When this deception is but was cut into a fine brilliant of 137 suspected, the stone should be taken carats, thus losing two-thirds of its out of its setting for examination. weight in the operation. It is said to
A very remarkable discovery has be the finest diamond (though not the lately been made, that the chemical largest) in the world, in beauty of form, element boron, the base of the common and purity of water. During the reign substance borax, may, by a peculiar pro- of terror, when the Tuileries were pluncess, be obtained in transparent crystals dered, the diamond disappeared, along which possess the high refractive power with all the other crown jewels ; but of the diamond, and a hardness as great, it turned up again, and was pledged by if not greater. At present, the crystals the Republic to a merchant in Berlin. produced have been too small to be of Redeemed at a later period, it emcommercial value ; but it is quite possible bellished the sword of Napoleon I., and that, hereafter, the discovery may prove was taken by the Prussians after the to be of great importance.
battle of Waterloo. It
now in the It only remains to mention a few French crown, and was exhibited in the particular stones celebrated for their French Exhibition of 1855. size, and which have had, on account of The “Star of the South,” another their great value, a history of their own. large brilliant, was also exhibited there :
The largest stone professing to be a it was found lately in the Brazilian diamond is the “Braganza” found in mines, and weighs 125 caráts; it is of Brazil in 1741, and preserved, in its an oval shape ; 35 millimetres long, 29 rough state, in the Royal Treasury at wide, and 19 thick. It is very pure, Lisbon. It is as large as a hen's egg, but its colour is slightly inclining to and weighs 1680 carats ; but doubts pink. It is in private hands, and for are entertained whether it may not be sale. in reality only a white topaz and no The “Sancy" diamond, of 53} carats, diamond at all; a supposition which, as has a singular history. It came origithe Portuguese Government decline to nally from India, and, about the fifteenth allow it to be cut or sufficiently ex- century, was in the possession of the amined, would appear quite possible. luxurious Duke of Burgundy, Charles the
The largest authenticated diamond Bold, who wore it, probably as a talisman, known is that of the Rajah of Mattan in the unfortunate battle of Nancy, in in Borneo. It is of the purest water, Switzerland, where he was killed. A of a pear shape, and weighs 367 carats. common Swiss soldier, who discovered It was found a century ago at Landack, the body in a ditch, found the jewel in and has been the object of many wars the clothes, and, not knowing its value, for its possession.
sold it for a florin to a Swiss priest, The celebrated “Pitt” or “Regent” who transferred it to the hands of the diamond was found in 1702, in the Confederacy. · It subsequently came mines of Parteal, twenty miles from into the possession of the King of Masulipatam, by a slave, who having Portugal, who, in 1489, being in want concealed its discovery from his em- of money, parted with it to a French ployers, offered it to a sailor on condition trader. In the sixteenth century it that he would give him his freedom. found its way into the hands of a The sailor lured him on board his ship, Huguenot nobleman, the Baron of Sancy, threw him overboard, and sold the stone who happened to be in Soleure when to the then Governor of Fort St. George, King Henry III. was trying to negotiate whose name was Pitt, for 10001.; he
a loan. Sancy offered him, as a true quickly ran through the money and subject, the diamond, and his offer was accepted; but the messenger who was of all, is our own great diamond, the entrusted to convey it to the king (some celebrated Koh-i-noor ; the story of accounts say Sancy himself) was way- which would make a very fair true laid and murdered, but had time before romance of three goodly volumes. his death to swallow the stone, which Its origin is older than any historical subsequently was found in the stomach records reveal, but it can be traced of the corpse. The stone was next as far back as the beginning of the traced into the possession of James II. fourteenth century, when it came into of England, who took it with him when the treasury of Delhi ; and from this he fled to France in 1688, and after- time it became intimately associated wards, when he was in distress for with the entire history of the Indian money, parted with it to Louis XIV. for wars and dynasties, until, on the late 25,0001.-—and Louis XV. is said to have annexation of the Punjab, it was taken worn it in the clasp of his hat at his possession of by our government, coronation. It vanished in 1792, but brought to England in 1850, and prereappeared in the Napoleon era, and sented to the Queen. It was shown at was sold for 500,000 silver rubles to the the international exhibition of 1851, Emperor of Russia, in whose possession in the state it was received, weighing it still remains.
186 carats; but it was so badly cut that The “Nassack" diamond was cap- its brilliancy scarcely exceeded that of a tured during the Mahratta war in Indiapiece of crystal, and it had several flaws in the Peishwa's baggage, by the com- and defects in its structure. The Queen, bined armies under the Marquis of after taking advice from competent Hastings; and, after changing hands seve- judges, decided to have it recut; which ral times, was purchased, about twenty was done in London (by workmen exyears ago, by the Marquis of Westminster. pressly brought over from Amsterdam It was afterwards partly re-cut by Hunt for the purpose) in 1852. It has now and Roskell, and is now a beautiful the form of a regular brilliant; and, colourless stone, weighing 78 carats. It though its weight has been reduced to is of a triangular or pear shape.
104 carats, it has become, what it never Many other large diamonds might was before, a most splendid jewel, be mentioned, each of which has a his- worthy of its royal mistress, whose tory, but perhaps the most interesting unsullied diadem may it long adorn!
A FEW WORDS ABOUT SORROW.
BY THE AUTHOR OF “JOHN HALIFAX, GENTLEMAN."
Of which it is rather venturesome to
making a jest about funerals, just as if there were no such thing as dying. It is good to laugh, it is good to be merry; no human being is the better for always contemplating “the miseries of human life," and talking of “graves and worms and epitaphs.” Yet since sorrow, in its infinitely varied forms and solemn inward unity, is common to all, should we not sometimes pause to look at it, seriously, calmly, nor be afraid to speak of it, as a great fact—the only fact of of? And since we are so sure of it, will and bleeding inwardly, yet which may a few words more or less, suggesting prove a death wound; a fourth has how to deal with it in others, and how sustained some heavy visible blow or to bear it for ourselves, do us any harm? loss, which we all talk of, compassionI trow not.
ate, would fain comfort if we could, but For, laugh as we may, there is such a we cannot. These various shapes which thing as sorrow; most people at some sorrow takes compose a common unity; portion of their lives have experienced and every heart which has once known it-no imaginary misery-no carefully its own bitterness, learns from thence to petted-up wrong ; no accidental anxiety, understand, in a measure, the bitterness or state of nervous irritable discontent, of every other human heart. The words, but a deep, abiding, inevitable sorrow. “He bore our griefs and carried our It may have come slowly or suddenly; sorrows,” —"in all our afflictions he may weigh heavier or lighter at differ- was afflicted,” have a secondary and ent times, or according to our differing earthly as well as a Divine significance ; moods and temperaments; but it is and to be “acquainted with grief,” gives there-a settled reality not to be escaped to any man a power of consolation, from. At bed and board, in work or which seems to come direct through play, alone and in company, it keeps him from the great Comforter of all. to us, as close as our shadow, and as The “ Christus Consolator which certainly following. And so we know it Scheffer painted,—the Man Divine, surwill remain with us ; for months, for
rounded by, and relieving every form years-perhaps even to the other world. of human anguish, is a noble type of Therefore what can we preach to our
to attain which all must selves, or to our fellows, concerning it? feel that their own anguish has been Perhaps the wisest lesson of all is that cheaply purchased, if by means of it of the ancient Hebrew, who laid his they may have learned to minister unto hand upon his mouth, “because THOU all these. didst it.” For sorrow is a holy thing. This ministry of consolation is not The meanest mortal who can say truly, necessarily external, or intentional. We “ Here I and sorrow sit,"
must all have sometimes felt, that the
people who do us most good are those feels also somewhat of the silent conse- who are absolutely unaware of doing it. cration of that awful companionship, Even as “baby-fingers, waxen touches," which may well
will melt into flesh and blood again a
heart that has seemed slowly turning into “ Bid kings come bow to it,"
stone, so the chance influence of someyet elevates the sufferer himself to a thing or somebody, intrinsically and unhigher condition of humanity, and brings consciously good, will often soothe us him nearer to the presence of the King like a waft of sweet scent borne across of kings.
a dull high-road from over a garden wall. Grief is a softening thing, from its It may be the sight of peaceful, lovely, very universality. Ex uno disce omnes. beloved old
which silently and Your child, my neighbour, may be smilingly, “And yet I have suffered dying, or giving you anguish sharp as too;" or the brightness in some young death; my own familiar friend may face, honest and brave, which reminds a have lifted up his heel against me, man of the days of his own youth, and causing me now, and perhaps for ever, shames him out of irresolution or cynical to doubt if there be such a thing as unbelief, daring him, as it were, to be fidelity, or honour, or honesty in the such a coward as to let his after life world; a third, whom we all know and give the lie to the aspirations of his meet daily, may have received yester- prime. Or the influence, more fugitive day, or last week, or last month, some still, comes from a word or two in a small accidental stab, altogether inward, book, or a look in a stranger's face,
which, however inexplicably, makes us new-born child, crying aloud unto Him feel at once that this book or this who alone can understand our total stranger understands us, refreshes and
agony of desolation.
But this great helps us—is to us like a flower in a solitude of suffering is impossible to sick room, or a cup of water in a river many; and indeed can only be sustained less land.
without injury by those strongly religiIt would be curious to trace, if any ous natures unto whom the sense of the but immortal eyes ever could trace, how Divine presence is not merely a tacit strongly many lives have been influenced belief, or a poetical imagination, but a by these instinctive sympathies ; and proved fact-as real as any of the facts what a heap of unknown love and bene of daily life are to other people. With diction may follow until death many a whom it is impossible to argue. Let him man-or woman--who walks humbly that readeth understand, if he can ; or if and unconsciously, on, perhaps, a very it be given him to understand, these obscure and difficult way, fulfilling this great mysteries. silent ministry of consolation.
But one truth concerning sorrow is We are speaking of consolation first, simple and clear enough for a child's and not without purpose ; let us now comprehension ; and it were well if say a little word about sorrow.
from childhood we were all taught it; It may seem an anomaly, and yet is namely, that that grief is the most nobly most true, that the grief which is at borne which is allowed to weigh the least once the heaviest and the easiest to heavily on any one else. Not all people, bear is a grief of which nobody knows; however, are unselfish enough to persomething, no matter what, which, for ceive this. Many feel a certain pride whatever reason, must be kept for the in putting on and long retaining their depth of the heart, neither asking nor “sackcloth and ashes," nay, they condesiring sympathy, counsel, or allevia ceive that when they have sustained a tion. Such things are—oftener per- heavy affliction, there is a sort of dishaps than we know of; and, if the suf grace in appearing too easily to "get over ferer can bear it at all, it is the best and it.” But here they make the frequent easiest way of bearing grief, even as error of shallow surface-judging minds. the grief itself becomes the highest, we They cannot see that any real wound in had almost said the divinest form of a deep, true, and loving heart is never sorrow upon earth. For it harms no "got over.” We may bury our dead one, it wounds and wrongs no one ; it is out of our sight, or out of our neighthat solitary agony unto which the bour's sight, which is of more importangels come and minister--making the ance; we may cease to miss them from night glorious with the shining of their the routine of our daily existence, and wings.
learn to name people, things, places and Likewise, in any blow utterly irreme times, as calmly as if no pulse had ever diable, which strikes at the very core of throbbed horribly at the merest allusion life, we little heed what irks and ir to them-but they are not forgotten. ritates us much in lesser pain-namely, They have merely passed from the outer to see the round of daily existence to the inner fold of our double life. moving on untroubled. We feel it not; Which fold lies nearest to us, we know; we are rather glad of its monotonous and which are usually the most precious, motion. And to be saved from all ex the things we have and hold, or the ternal demonstrations is a priceless re things we have lost-we also know. lief ; neither to be watched, nor soothed, It may seem a cruel word to say-but nor reasoned with, nor pitied : to wrap a long-indulged and openly displayed safely round us the convenances of so sorrow, of any sort, is often an ignoble, ciety, or of mechanical household associ and invariably a selfish feeling ; being ation ; and only at times to drop them a sacrifice of the many to the few. If
quaintance, with its percentage, large or tion and wisdom combined ; which small, of those whom we heartily re nothing, but tender instinct united to spect, we shall always find that it is the a certain degree of personal suitability, highest and most affectionate natures will ever supply. For, like a poet, a which conquer sorrow soonest and best; nurse, either of body or mind, nascitur those unselfish ones who can view a non fit. We all must know many exmisfortune in its result on others as well cellent and well-meaning people, whom as on their own precious individuality; in sickness or misfortune we would as and those in which great capacity of soon admit into our chamber of sorrow loving acts at once as bane and antidote, as we would a live hippopotamus or a giving them, with a keen susceptibility herd of wild buffaloes. to pain, a power of enduring it which Perhaps (another anomaly) the sharpto the unloving is not only impossible est affliction that any human being can but incredible. It is the weak, the endure is one which is not a personal self-engrossed, and self-important, who grief at all, but the sorrow of somebody chiefly make to themselves public altars else. To see any one dearly beloved of perpetual woe, at which they worship, writhing under a heavy stroke, or connot the Dii manes of departed joys, but sumed by a daily misery which we are the apotheoses of living ill-humours. powerless to remove or even to soften, is
An incurable regret is an unwhole a trial heavy indeed-heavier in one some, unnatural thing to the indulger of sense than any affliction of one's own, it; an injury to others, an accusation because of that we know the height and against Divinity itself. The pastor's depth, the aggravations and alleviations. reproof to the weeping mother—"What,
can never fathom another's have you not yet forgiven God Al sorrow,—not one, even the keenest-eyed mighty ?” contains a truth which it were and tenderest-hearted among us, can good all mourners laid to heart. How ever be so familiar with the ins and hard it is to any of us to "forgive God outs of it as to be sure always to minisAlmighty;" not only for the heavy ter to its piteous needs at the right time afflictions which he has sent to us, but and in the right way. Watch as we for the infinitude of small annoyances, may, we are continually more or less which (common sense would tell us, in the dark, often irritating where we if we used it) we mostly bring upon would soothe, and wounding where we ourselves! Yet even when calamity would give our lives to heal. comes—undoubted, inevitable calamity Also, resignation to what may be -surely, putting religion altogether termed a vicarious sorrow is cruelly aside, the wisest thing you can do with hard to learn. We sometimes are a wound is to heal it, or rather to let it goaded into a state of hall maddened heal; which it will do slowly and protestation against Providence, feeling naturally, if you do not voluntarily keep as if we—kept bound hand and foot it open into a running sore. Some on the shore—were set to watch a fellowpeople, with the very best intentions, creature drowning. To be able to beseem to act upon us like a poultice lieve that Infinite
Wisdom really knows over gaping flesh; and others again what is best for that beloved fellowofficiate as surgical instruments, laying creature far more than we do, is the bare every quivering nerve, and press- highest state to which faith can attain ; ing upon every festering spot till we and the most religious can only catch it cry out in our agony that we had in brief glimpses through a darkness of rather be left to die in peace, unhealed. angry doubt that almost rises at times Very few have the blessed art of letting into blasphemous despair. From such nature alone to do her benign work, agonies no human strength can save ; and only aiding her by those simple and while they last every human consomeans which suggest themselves to the lation fails. We can only lie humble at instinct of affection,-that is, of affec the feet of Eternal Wisdom, yielding