The Treasure Trove Of Dresden (Dresden Green Vault)

“ Europe and possibly the world’s largest collection of treasures, objects   d’art, cabinets of curiosity, baroque contraptions, and generally royal weirdness is all held in Germany’s Grünes Gewölbe or Green Vault. Originally the private collection of Augustus the Strong, ruler of Saxony (modern day Dresden), the Green Vault has everything from ornate silverware with polished coral handles to nearly microscopic portrait reliefs of royalty carved in cherrywood or ivory (you have to look through a magnifying glass to see them). There are Venetian wind-up automatons that pour wine and various other ornate cabinets and contraptions. The collection even includes such contested items as the solid gold drinking bowl of Ivan the Terrible. The literal crown jewel of the Green Vault is the impossibly rare Dresden Green; a massive, naturally irradiated, green diamond from India. The diamond is on par with the Hope Diamond and the Mountain of Light in the Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom. It is an internally flawless hunk of beautiful green carbon mounted in a hat clasp and no picture will do it justice.”