Saturday, 7 February 2009

Pink Sapphires and Green Rubies

Ok, now I know most people aren't delighted at the thought of a snake coiled around them, but if you remember that they were worn as protective amulets (the healing snakes of Asclepios, the Greek god of medicine) of the ancient world, it's really not so bad. And then you can really concentrate on their alluring beauty and the detail of each and every scale... I went to the V&A jewelry exhibition a while ago, and I really recommend it. And it's free. They were donated a magnificent collection of rings that have been displayed in a spiral, showcasing the vast variety of colour spectrums of each precious stone and mineral. Really quite astounding. Who knew rubies could be a shocking shade of green? A sapphire such a deep pink?
Now this astronomical compendium is in a whole league of its own... not only is it a mini sundial with which you can measure the hour by day, but one can also place it front of the eye and look towards a pointer star in the constellation Ursula Major and find the time at night. Oh and it's a compass. And it can tell you the phase of the moon. And the position of the sun and the moon in the Zodiac with its rotating discs, cogs and magical pointers. And its the definition of mechanical perfection and beauty.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i think that armband would go quite nicely on you, pup.

"asclepias" is the genus for milkweed--I wonder if it is more medicinal than we realize?