The Mysterious Mr Jacob: Diamond Merchant, Magician and Spy

The Mysterious Mr Jacob: Diamond Merchant, Magician and Spy

John Zubrzycki

The scandal that rocked the Raj

In 1891, a infamous curio-dealer from Simla provided to promote the world's greatest brilliant-cut diamond to the Nizam of Hyderabad. If the audacious deal got here via, the service provider may were manage for all times. however the transaction went horribly unsuitable. The Nizam accused him of fraud, triggering a sensational trial within the Calcutta excessive court docket that made headlines round the world.

The broker used to be Alexander Malcolm Jacob, a guy of mysterious origins and vibrant infamy. He was once India's so much profitable purveyor of helpful stones and used to be rumoured to be 'rich nearly past the goals of Aladdin'. Hailed as a celeb in his personal lifetime, he was once the muse for the shadowy Lurgan Sahib in Rudyard Kipling's Kim. A confidant of viceroys and maharajahs, he dabbled in magic and used to be a participant within the nice video game. but he died in obscurity, sporting a lot of his secrets and techniques to his grave.

In this meticulously researched account of Jacob's lifestyles, John Zubrzycki reconstructs occasions via long-lost letters, court docket documents and annotations on mystery records, bringing us a riveting learn of a guy whose obituary in a number one day-by-day fittingly defined him because the so much 'romantic and arresting determine in our time'.

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