the Premier Diamond Mine
The Premier Diamond
Mine is a South African underground diamond mine which is owned by De
Beers and established in 1902. The mine is situated in the town of
Cullinan which is located 40 kilometres east of Pretoria in the Gauteng
Province of South Africa. The famous Cullinan Diamond was also found at
the Premier Diamond Mine in 1905. One hundred years after its opening,
in November 2003, the Premier Diamond Mine was renamed the Cullinan
Diamond Mine to celebrate its centenary.
How the Allnatt
Diamond was formed
The De Beers mine in South Africa, where the Allnatt diamond was found, is situated
on an ancient volcanic pipe. Diamonds are formed
when extreme heat and extreme pressure cause carbon atoms to crystallize
forming diamonds approximately ninety miles under the earth's surface.
Diamonds reach the surface of the earth via volcanic pipes, or channels.
diamonds contain impurities or structural defects that cause the
coloration. The most common impurity, nitrogen, causes a slight to intense
yellow coloration depending upon the type and concentration of nitrogen
Natural yellow diamonds contain the element nitrogen (N).
Major Alfred Ernest
Allnatt, a British Millionaire was well known as a sporting man, owning
many racehorses, a benefactor and a patron of the arts. His generosity
and patronage can be illustrated by his involvement in a famous Rubens
painting. In 1959 Major Allnatt bought the 1634 painting of the
Adoration of the Magi by Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish Baroque Era Painter,
1577-1640) from the estate of the Duke of Westminster for a record
£275,000. In 1961 Major Allnatt presented the painting of Adoration of
the Magi by Rubens to King's College Chapel at Cambridge University,
England. The painting measures 4.2 metres high by 3.2 wide. The painting
by Caravaggio called `Salome with the Head of St John the Baptist'
was bought in 1970 from Major AE Allnatt by the National Gallery in