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Molly Cule
164886.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:09 am Reply with quote

The ancient Buddhas in Afghanistan that were destroyed were believed by local people to have once had their eye sockets set with great emeralds which could be seen from miles away flashing in the sunshine.

164887.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:09 am Reply with quote

The process of growing emeralds recalls the way pearls are made. I'll post a link over there so we don't forget.

Molly Cule
164893.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:18 am Reply with quote

Napoleon gave Josephine emeralds as a present. As she sat for a portrait just before it was announced publically that Napoleon was divorcing her she asked the artist named Isabey to 'Paint me in emeralds.... I want them to represent the underlying freshness of my grief'. She said she heard that certain Englishwomen 'abandoned by their husbands' wore green to show that they had been forsken............... which reminds me of the Chinese who say they are 'wearing a green hat' if their girlfriends/wives have had an affair.

Molly Cule
164898.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:23 am Reply with quote

The emeralds in this very painting led to the appointment of a gangster as the first chief of the French National Police - then called La Sûreté Nationale.

The emerald necklace was stolen, Napoleon was worried his enemies might think that he had arranged the theft so asked his undercover police to hunt it down, they had no idea how to do this so they asked the infamous outlaw Eugene Francois Vidocq to ask around the underworld, he found the necklace and as thanks he was pardoned by Napoleon. He went onto become a famous detective, a master of disguise and the first chief of the Sûreté.

Molly Cule
164906.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:33 am Reply with quote

In Ancient Roman times emerald was said to be the official gemstone of the messenger god mercury. He was the god of paths and roads as well as sleep and dreams. People claimed to have odd dreams at emerald mines.

Molly Cule
164909.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:35 am Reply with quote

The hieroglyphics word 'mesha' meant both an army sent to war and conscripts sent to quarries - both were similarly dangerous things involving going to a remote and dangerous place and both were performed by people who hadn't necessarily chosen to do the job in hand.

164916.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:42 am Reply with quote

Vidocq seems to me to be the way into this topic - so far, anyway.

Molly Cule
164918.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:51 am Reply with quote

Yes, I think he is a good bet. He hired 28 detectives for his force all of whom were former criminals.

Eugène François Vidocq is considered by historians and those in law enforcement to be the father of modern criminal investigation. Monsieur Vidocq:


introduced record keeping (a card-index system), criminalistics, and the science of ballistics into police work;
was the first to make plaster-of-paris casts of foot/shoe impressions;
was a master of disguise and surveillance;
held patents on indelible ink and unalterable bond paper;
and founded the first modern detective agency and credit bureau, Le Bureau des Renseignements.

164923.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 10:57 am Reply with quote

Vidocq appears to have been bezziemates with Balzac, the latter basing his detective Vautrin on the former.


164934.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:15 am Reply with quote

Good. Fits into Empires / Emperors as well as introducing Emeralds. Are there any pictures of him?

Molly Cule
164939.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:33 am Reply with quote

164941.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:34 am Reply with quote

picture researchers

Molly Cule
164942.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:36 am Reply with quote

Anand Swarup, the senior superintendent of Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh, India is the modern day Vidocq of India. He is using the same methods that his French counterpart used to employ two centuries back.

Molly Cule
164943.  Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:38 am Reply with quote

here he is on a stamp : )

Molly Cule
167258.  Wed Apr 18, 2007 7:19 am Reply with quote

Vidocq bought a tavern on the Rue de l'Orme where, strangely, thieves met in abundance not knowing the real identity of the proprietor. Secrets of the underworld swept from table to table while his agents – and sometimes Vidocq himself in wig and false beard – sat amongst them.

His first book, Mémoires de Vidocq, chef de police de sûreté jusqu'en 1827, aujourd'hui proprietetaire et fabricant de papiers à Saint Mandé (literally "The Memoirs of Vidocq, Chief of Police of the Sûreté Until 1827, and Now Proprietor and Maker of Papers from Saint Mandé') was published in 1828, with an English translation hot on its heels.

Victor Hugo based not one but two characters in Les Miserables on Vidocq - both Jean Valjean and Inspector Javert. Honore Balzac's character Vautran, in Pere Goriot, was also modeled after himVidocq's legendary crime-solving reputation was also lauded in Poe's Murders in the Rue Morgue and in Herman Melville's Moby Dick. The fugitive in Charles Dickens' Great Expectations was also inspired by Vidocq's real-life exploits.


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