Item Description
CHINESE CHECKERS
GEMSTONE MARBLES
ELEGANTLY FINISHED CLASSIC WOODEN BOARD

This is a brand new luxury Chinese checkers set.  The playing marbles are made of gemstones in 6 colours. 
The elegant wooden chess board has a fine texture
.  It is made from middle density wood fibre board, a kind of pressed wood commonly used in the manufacturing of home furniture.  This is a durable material and will ensure the lifetime usage of the product.  The board is finished with a nice rosewood surface in high gloss.  You are able to feel the good manufacturing quality from the smooth, shiny surface when you touch and hold the chess board. 

The two small Chinese characters printed on the upper surface of the chess board are in ancient style Chinese calligraphy.  The first character means "Royal" or "Palace", while the second one means "Master" or "Saint".  Combined together the message reflects a top grade classic chess product for the master players.  It is exceptionally prepared for your chess play and has no equal.
The base of the wooden chess board is finished with a felt-like sound absorbing material, which helps the chess board to sit elegantly on virtually any surface.  The wooden chess board includes a hidden drawer that fits in perfectly with the artistic outline of the board.  It is for the convenient storage of all playing pieces. 

 
GEMSTONE MARBLES

Six different types of Gemstone Marbles are chosen to go with this fine chessboard.  They are White Chalcedony (white colour ones), Carnelian (red colour ones), Black Onyx (black colour ones), Aventurine (green colour ones), Picture Jasper (yellowish and picturesque ones) and Rose Quartz (pink colour ones).  The choice of these gemstones are carefully designed to enhance the overall colour combination of the chess set.
The production of these gemstone marbles is from a different source.  While the Chinese Checkers chessboard is designed and manufactured by a chess producer, the gemstone marbles is manufactured by a separate gemstone factory having no business relationship with the chess producer.  This will ensure the different components of this Chinese Checkers chess set are produced by competent persons in their respective trade.
While the same type of gemstone is classified into different gradings, I have specifically requested the gemstone producer to supply me with what they called the "A" grade product.  These are the ones with the best quality and also the highest unit cost.  There is also a further selection process when I collect these gemstone marbles: the gemstone producer manufactures more than my ordered quantity, so that I may pick the best among the best.  These processes have minimized the possibility of defects in the gemstones, and also reduced variations between the same type of gemstone marbles.
THE SIX TYPES OF SELECTED GEMSTONE

White Chalcedony:
It has a waxy luster.  The term chalcedony is derived from the name of the ancient Greek town Chalkedon in Asia Minor (located in Istanbul).  As early as in the Bronze Age chalcedony was in use the Mediterranean region.  It is a material for making ornaments, tools and weapons in ancient times.
There are two common types of white chalcedony: one is translucent, and the other one is opaque.  The opaque type is selected in this chess set, as the unique, milky color gives a greater degree of individuality to other gemstone marbles.  It is also the most expensive ones among the 6 types of gemstone, with its unit cost doubles the others.


Carnelian:
It is a reddish brown mineral recovered from Bronze Age Minoan layers at Knossos on the island Crete.  The word carnlian is derived from the Latin word "caro, carnis", meaning "flesh".  Carnelian was widely used in Roman times to make signet or seal rings for imprinting a seal with wax on important documents.  The carnalian marbles supplied with this chess set has undergone color enhancements to improve its nature and durability.  This is a common treatment for this type of gemstone among the gemstone industry, since unenhanced carnelian is rare and may change color easily under prolonged sunlight.
I would like to mention some carnelian folklore for your interest.  In the list of birthstones, it resembles the month of August.  It was believed that carnelian brings good fortune, and heals mental and physical tensions.


Black Onyx:
It is a rich-looking, affordable black stone.  Oynx originated from Greek, meaning "claw" or "fingernail".  It was used in Egypt as early as in the Second Dynasty to make bowls and other pottery items (see references). 
Since ancient times, Onyx has been dyed to improve its color.  The black onyx marbles supplied with this chess set has undergone color enhancements, as in many other black onyx gemstones you can find in the market. 
A bit of unwritten story for black onyx: it is the anniversary gemstone for the 10th year of marriage.  Black onyx is said to be able to help you change your erratic habits, and is considered as a powerful protection stone.


Aventurine
It is a nice affordable stone, often called the "poor man's Emerald".  Aventurine is an Italian word meaning "a ventura" or "by chance".  This gemstone gives a glistening effect, and is famous for its beauty and durability.  Apart from making jewelry, aventurine is also widely used as landscape stone and building stone.
With its reputation as a luck charmer, aventurine is also known as "gambler's stone".  Aventurine is believed to promote mind clarity and self confidence, so that it may help you find creative solutions to problems.


Picture Jasper:
Jasper is a very pretty, inexpensive earthstone. It means "spotted or speckled stone" in its name.  Based on archaeological recoveries at the Palace of Knossos, the history of jasper dated back to 1800BC when jasper was carved to produced seals (see references).
Jasper is an opaque rock.  The picture jasper that goes with this chess set exhibits combinations of patterns, which are formed in the process of hydrothermal circulation, when the original silica rich sediment and volcanic ash consolidates and deposits.
Jasper was also known as a protection gemstone, with the power to drive away evil spirits.


Rose Quartz:
It is a unique pink stone, unlike any other pink mineral species.  The color is a result of iron and titanium impurities.  Rose quartz is abundant in quantity and its vivid pink color can go with anything.  It is the anniversary stone for the 2nd year of marriage.
Rose quartz is said to present the power to balance emotions and to open the heart.
One thing to keep in mind: Rose Quartz fades in the sun, so it is important to avoid exposing it for a prolonged period in sunlight.


References:
1. Mary Winearls Porter, What Rome was Built with: A description of the Stones Employed, 1907, H. Frowde, Rome, p.108
2. Hogan C Michael, Knossos fieldnotes, 2008-04-14, the Modern Antiquarian, http://www.themodernantiquarian.com/site/10854/knossos.html#fieldnotes
3. Margaret Burgon Klemp, History of Gem Stones, 2009-08-06, http://www.geminfo.com/history-of-gem-stones.html
4. George W Fischer, Introduction to Gemstone Coloration and Dyeing, 1990, 2009-08-06, http://www.ganoksin.com/borisat/nenam/gemstone-dyeing.htm
5. GemologyOnline.com, Gemstone Treatments and Enhancements: Online Gemological Expertise, 2009-08-06, http://www.gemologyonline.com/treatment.html
6. Gem Info, Gemstone and Jewelry Care, 2009-08-06, http://www.geminfo.com/jewelry-care.html
7. Wikipedia, Chalcedony, 2009-08-06, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chalcedony
8. Gem Info, Carnelian, 2009-08-06, htp://www.geminfo.com/carnelian.html
9. Wikipedia, Carnelian, 2009-08-06, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnelian
10. Wikipedia, Onyx, 2009-08-06, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onyx
11. Gem Info, Onyx, 2009-08-06, http://www.geminfo.com/onyx.html
12. Yuman Hussain, Black Onyx-Facts and Buying Guide, 2009-08-06, JewelInfo4y.com, http://www.jewelinfo4u.com/Black_Onyx.aspx
13. Wikipedia, Aventurine, 2009-08-06, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aventurine
14. Gem Info, Aventurine, 2009-08-06, http://www.geminfo.com/aventurine.html
15. Gem Info, Jasper, 2009-08-06, http://www.geminfo.com/jasper.html
16. Wikipedia, Jasper, 2009-08-06, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jasper
17. Amethyst Galleries, Inc., ROSE QUARTZ, the pink variety of quartz, 2009-08-06, http://www.galleries.com/minerals/GEMSTONE/ROSE_QUA/rose_qua.htm
18. Gem Info, Rose Quartz, 2009-08-06, http://www.geminfo.com/rosequartz.html


SPECIFICATIONS
Dimensions of wooden chess board  : 295mm (11.6") from corner to corner
Dimensions of gemstone pieces        : 13.5mm (0.5") in diameter
Thickness of chess board                  : approx. 28mm (1.1")
Weight (including playing pieces)     : approx. 1.4kg (about 3 lb)
Playing pieces                                   : total 60 pieces of gemstone marbles, which consist of
                                                           10 pieces of White Chalcedony in natural colour (white)
                                                           10 pieces of Carnelian with colour enhancement (red)
                                                           10 pieces of Black Onyx with colour enhancement (black)
                                                           10 pieces of Aventurine in natural colour (green)
                                                           10 pieces of Picture Jasper in natural colour (yellowish, picturesque)
                                                           10 pieces of Rose Quartz in natural colour (pink)
Gemstone chemical composition        : Silica (silicon dioxide)
Hardness in Mohs Scale                     : 6.0 - 7.0 (white chalcedony, carnelian)
                                                            7.0 (black onyx, aventurine, rose quartz)
                                                            6.5 - 7.0 (picture jasper)
Index of refraction                             : 1.54 - 1.55 (white chalcedony, black onyx, picture jasper, rose quartz)
                                                            1.56 - 1.66 (carnelian)
                                                            1.55 (aventurine)
Density                                              : 2.59 - 2.61 (white chalcedony, carnelian)
                                                            2.65 - 2.67 (black onyx)
                                                            2.64 - 2.69 (aventurine)
                                                            2.58 - 2.91 (picture jasper)
                                                            2.65 (rose quartz)
Transparency                                     : translucent to opaque
Country of Origin                              : South Africa (white chalcedony, aventurine, rose quartz)
                                                            Brazil (carnelian, black onyx)
                                                            Uruguay (picture jasper)
Maintenance                                       : protect gemstone marbles from harsh chemicals, extreme temperatures,                                                             scratches, and store them away from sunlight
Cleaning                                             : wipe gently with a damp cloth
Packing                                              : Paper box packing, to be delivered in padded envelope
Packing dimensions                           : 300mm (L) x 260mm (W) x 30mm (D) (12" x 10" x 1.2")

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