Category Archives: geochemistry

Some facets of the Geology of Diamonds

Originally published on the Scientific American guest blog. Geoscientists can’t say if diamonds are forever, but they can say that some are already billions of years old. They form in a place we’ll never reach: the deep earth, hundreds of … Continue reading

Categories: diamonds, geochemistry, impacts, subduction

Cornwall: tin, pasties and the world

The county of Cornwall is like England’s foot, stretching out languorously into the warm waters of the Gulf Stream. Now a relatively poor area, best known for fishing and tourism, it has a proud industrial past based on mining, notably of tin. … Continue reading

Categories: England, geochemistry, History

Mexican silver in Tudor England

Geology and history have much in common. Both seek to understand the past by objective analysis of the traces it has left in the present. Both arose from the application of hand and mind to the study of particular things … Continue reading

Categories: geochemistry, History

How to make a rock from scratch

“If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.” Carl Sagan. I have a handsome piece of rock in my hand. How did it come to be, how was it made? A perfectly … Continue reading

Categories: geochemistry, metamorphism, subduction