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             23 November, 2020
 

    
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Treasure Hunting 101

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2007-10-27 05:24:43     
Article by Liza Othman

Buried treasure is everywhere. You can hunt the most precious things of the world without even going far from home. Maybe your idea of buried treasure is a romantic one. You think of a great brassbound chest full of gold and rubies, hidden away by a black-bearded pirate on a lonely stretch of seacoast. There are plenty of such treasures still waiting for someone to find them. To start with, there are fascinating stories about pirate gold, many of which have been handed down to us from the time of the first Queen Elizabeth. Perhaps you would like to think of yourself as a deep-sea diver, dressed in helmet, rubber suit and lead-weighted boots. Under the seven seas are the hulks of hundreds of ships, some of which are known to have been carrying gold, silver, jewels or valuable coins when they sank. Men have spent fortunes in search of these vanished ships. A few wrecked ships have been located, and divers have brought up at least part of the treasures they carried. But most of it is still to be found. Buried treasure is all around us, wherever we live.

There is a famous story to illustrate this point. It was told by Dr. Russell H. Conwell, a minister in Philadelphia. People liked the story so well that he wove it into a speech which he called "Acres of Diamonds." He delivered the speech thousands of times, between 1900 and 1915, to huge audiences all over the United States. Much of the money he earned from "Acres of Diamonds" went to establish Temple University in Philadelphia.

Here is the story:

A wealthy Persian farmer named Ali Hafed was talking one day to a priest, who told him how the world was made and how precious metals and diamonds were formed. He said to Ali Hafed that if he had one diamond the size of his thumb he could purchase the county, and if he had a diamond mine, he could place his children upon thrones through the power of his wealth. Ali Hafed was seized with a desire to own diamonds. He sold his farm in order to be free to look for them. He searched over all the known world, but with no success. Finally he drowned himself in despair.

One day the man who purchased Ali Hafed's farm noticed a curious flash of light from a stream on his land. He pulled out a large stone and took it home with him. The old priest came back to visit Ali Hafed's successor and saw the stone. "Has Ali Hafed come back?" he asked the man. "No," was the answer. "Why do you ask that?" "Because this stone is a diamond!" was the excited reply. In this way was discovered the diamond mines of Golconda, the most famous mines of antiquity. Dr. Conwell interpreted this discovery to mean that had Ali Hafed remained at home and dug in his own cellar or underneath his own wheat fields, instead of wretchedness, starvation and death in a strange land, he would have had "acres of diamonds."

Of course, you can't dig in your own cellar or out on the front lawn and expect to find diamonds. But without going too far from home, you can certainly find something that you will prize even if it has no money value. Any object of unusual interest, like an Indian arrowhead, a semi-precious stone, an unrecognized relic of pioneer days, is a form of treasure.

Maybe there is buried treasure in your own attic or cellar. It may be a collection of old stamps, or the rare signature of some famous man on a letter tucked away in a packing box.

The treasure may be hanging on your walls - perhaps an oil painting by an old master which nobody ever bothered to study closely. Some of the world's great works of art have come out of homes or store houses where nobody recognized their immense value. Art galleries and museums look for these "finds." Sometimes the valuable painting is hidden underneath a worthless one. Experts use X-rays to see if there is an older picture beneath the top layer of paint.

Maybe your buried treasure is a book - a first edition by a famous author such as Dickens or Thackeray. Every now and then a priceless first edition turns up in a second-hand bookshop or emerges from a box in somebody's cellar. So, you see, buried treasure doesn't have to be locked up in a chest and hidden underneath the ground. It can be right at your fingertips - and, like the farmer Ali Hafed in "Acres of Diamonds," you may be overlooking it. These things do happen in real life.

More about treasure hunting at http://TreasureHunting.FunHowToBooks.com

Liza Othman manages an ebook website. Find self-help, food & recipes, and hobby ebooks at http://www.FunHowToBooks.com/

Specialized in: Ebook - Ebook Online - Ebook Store - Recipe Ebooks - Self-help Ebooks - Self-improvement Ebooks - Handcraft Ebooks
URL: http://www.funhowtobooks.com
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