“Like a gemmy Washington Monument.”
The biggest, sparkliest aquamarine — named Dom Pedro — will go on display this week at the Smithsonian. Today, The Washington Post tells its story, which began in Brazil:
When found, the Dom Pedro crystal stretched more than three feet long and weighed something close to 100 pounds. Sometime in the late 1980s a garimpero, or prospector, spied it. He and two buddies pried it loose and lugged it out of a mine in the state of Minas Gerais, famous for its gemstones.
And then, guess what? THEY DROPPED IT. But it turned out to be a blessing, or something, and a bunch of white people were still rich, including a Palm Beach couple named Jane & Jeff who recently donated it to the museum. “Or so the story goes.” You just have to read it. Or watch Romancing the Stone, which is not the same story, but remember how much fun it was?