Foreign News: Three-minute Pearls

Meanest of tricks is to tell a wealthy woman that the best way to clean her Oriental pearls is to swish them through boiling water. As the pearls heat they will lose their moonbeam lustre, may crack and the wealthy lady will grow frantic. Yet last week all Japan honored a short, stocky, crinkly-faced old man who had rolled up his kimono sleeves, seized a blunt spade and vigorously shoveled into a fiery furnace 720,000 of his best pearls. Within three minutes they turned to flaky ashes (crystallized lime).

Gathered around the furnace were...

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