Paul De Bondt
Henri-Paul De Bondt was born in Strombeek-Bever, Belgium in 1957, the son of Alphonsius De Bondt, a roof Slater, and Angéla Vanhaelen. He married Claire de Coen and together they have three sons, Geoffroy, Jonathan and Thibaut. Paul has a degree in carpentry and antique furniture restoration, and in 1983 he obtained a bachelor's degree in biochemistry. He worked as a sales manager for a large French company for almost 25 years. Now he works in two schools close to home. Paul speaks, reads and writes fluently in Dutch, French, German and English.
Paul began collecting minerals in early childhood, always stuffing his pockets with pebbles and rocks. His father brought him pieces of slate from Martelange with little pyrite cubes in them. He was so astonished, how yellow "blocks" could have formed in rocks. His favorite play was to sneak into the coal-cellar to search for pyrite crystals and shiny anthracite.
Paul's collecting breakthrough came in 1977 when he purchased a collection stored in the basement of a local clergyman named Poncelet. Since then he has attend several shows a year, and taken field trips in Belgium, Europe and especially Cornwall. His greatest source of specimens was Belgian mineral dealer Gilbert Gauthier (1924-2006), a close friend since 1978.
Paul's specialties include old classics (especially from Cornwall and Devon), Belgian and Alpine minerals, systematic suites from Tsumeb, Katanga, Panasqueira and Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines, and suites of prehnite, anatase, native arsenic and schalenblende specimens from localities worldwide. His collection currently consists of over 5,500 specimens. He also collects petrified wood, fossil shark teeth and cowry seashells. His other hobbies include cooking and nature photography, especially mineral photomicrography.
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[Citation format for this entry:
WILSON, Wendell E. (2017)
Biographical Archive, at www.mineralogicalrecord.com.]
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