Barrera, Madame de (Anita de); Gems and Jewels their History, Geography, Chemistry and Ana. From the Earliest Ages Down to the Present Time…London, Richard Bentley, New Burlington Street, 1860. Octavo, pp. xxxii, 382, 1.
Bound in the original purple, ornate, embossed cloth with intertwined florals, elaborate gilt frame in center of front cover. Ornate gilt spine and spine titles. The binding is tight, light scuffing to boards, spine lightly sun toned. Text is lightly toned, first free end sheet removed, small, faint, private owner stamp on half title. Over all in very good condition.
Madame Barrera was born in Cuba, educated in Spain and lived her life in England and France. Little else is known about her. Within the gemological community she is known for her encyclopedic work “Gems and Jewels” in which she covers the connections between gems, science, and humanity. She views the subject from every aspect as an historian, political economist, a mineralogist, a physician, and a chemist. In the first part numerous famous jewels, gems and ornaments are described. In the second part the sources of gemstones are described, including origins, (mythological and geological), and type deposits. The third part covers scientific aspects of gems and historical background on gems. Part four covers the lore of gems, and engraved gems. The final part covers prominent individuals associated with gems, celebrated diamonds, types of jewelry and gems and great gem robberies. (Sinkankas 409-410).