Tuesday, April 9, 2013

H is for... the Hope Diamond

Welcome back to our tour of Washington, D.C.  Today is the letter H, and you know what that means...

The Hope Diamond!





A resident of the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, the Hope Diamond is one of the biggest tourist draws.  It has a long and infamous history, which makes it all the more captivating, if you ask me.
Hope Diamond
When I lived in Bethesda, I volunteered at the Natural History Museum on the weekends.  While I normally worked in the Dinosaur Hall, I occasionally worked in the Gems and Minerals Hall, which is the home of this fabulous diamond.  It was always fun to work nearby, in no small part because of the steady flow of museum visitors that came to see the famous gem.

Did you know?  This blue diamond phosphoresces red after being exposed to UV light.  Although museum visitors will only ever see the diamond in visible light, I thought this was still a cool picture:
Phosphorescence!

Have you seen the Hope Diamond in person?  Did you know it was mailed to the Smithsonian courtesy of the US postal system?  It's true--they have the original packaging at the Postal Museum!


18 comments:

  1. I've been to D.C. twice and have seen everything you've written about so far--What a great A-Z theme. Congrats on your forthcoming book with Harlequin RS. I write romance too, but am not published yet. I'm your newest follower.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Cathy! :)

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  2. Yep seen it, ogled over it, and couldn't imagine anyone wearing it.

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    1. No kidding! I'd be too paranoid to wear it--I'd probably lose it somehow!

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  3. Wow, I can't imagine that the a blue diamond would phosphoresces red. Very weird.

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    1. Behold the power of chemistry! :)

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  4. I love the museum and the Hope is one of those "must sees" for me. Thanks for the reminder.

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  5. What a unique phenomenon... a blue diamond phosphoresces red? Wow.
    Writer In Transit

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  6. What a great theme! I visited Washington once and saw many of these things. The Hope Diamond is amazing!

    Have a great day! I'm a new follower. :)

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  7. I have seen it multiple times (mostly hosting visitors to our home near DC), but I never knew it was phosphorescent. Great theme!

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    1. Thanks, D.L. I always loved taking friends to see it--one of those things that never got old!

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  8. I have seen the hope diamond. I am a fellow Texan, but I lived in DC for 4 years. I think I was a tourist for all four years. It is a mazing city, so I love your theme.

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    1. I know what you mean--so much to see and do there, and not enough time to explore it all! :)

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  9. That's so interesting. I can't believe something so precious would simply be mailed. And how exciting that you got to work in the museum and see it up close. I wish we had such exciting museums where I live.

    Have fun with a-z. :)

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    1. I got very spoiled living there, I will admit :)

      Thanks for stopping by!

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