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Business Books From The Dragons’ Den

Five of the UK’s leading multi-millionaire, serial entrepreneurs sit on the panel of the Dragons’ Den deciding whether or not to invest in business propositions. Successful applicants are few due to the many years experience of the Dragons whose advice should really be heeded, but often isn’t on the program.

After making their case the pitchees face a grilling from the panel who decide whether or not to take a stake in the company being pitched. Generally, they do not bother as the prudent questioning usually picks holes in the proposal being examined. However, some people do a good enough job to convince one or more Dragons to invest.

The Dragons have vast experience across a wide spectrum of business sectors and anyone who ends up working with one or more of them benefits greatly from their experience and knowledge. They all invest from time to time and continue to look for opportunities. They are not the type of people to stand still.

It follows that if these people are worth listening to the books they write are probably worth reading too. That’s assuming that the book in question concerns their specialty; making profits with successfully run businesses.

It is often said that success breeds success, so if you are a business person and would like to be successful hanging out with successful people like the Dragons would be a good idea. Failing that reading their books would be a viable second option. The question then is which book to choose, or which Dragon’s book to choose.

The obvious choice would be to choose a book written by your favourite Dragon, although a wiser option would be to choose the one with the greater experience in a field closer to your own. Each Dragon has a wide portfolio of business experience but still have specialties; Duncan Bannatyne – Care Homes, Health Clubs/Spa’s; Deborah Meadon – holiday company; Hilary Devey – Transportation and distribution; Peter Jones – technology; Theo Paphitis – retail, property, finance and consumer goods.

On the other hand, each probably has sufficient skills to make a business with potential in any sector do very well, so a particular Dragon’s speciality may not be critical. For most businesses appearing on the Dragons’ Den program, pitching to the panel and eventually getting the required investment is not an option. But spending the time reading one of the Dragons’ books is more realistic and could potentially provide the no-nonsense advice required to give your company the boost it requires for growth in the present economic climate.

The books of the present and past Dragons are readily available, from Amazon and elsewhere, good value and packed with the kind of advice that only years of experience can offer. There’s very little to lose and possibly a huge amount to gain. So what’s stopping you?

Dragon Antique Walking Canes

In both the East and West, dragons are a symbol of power. A wizard who can control a dragon or a warrior who can conquer this great creature will command the power of his world. It is sometimes the evil power, other times a protector’s. Hence it is a really popular theme for men’s canes. With an antique dragon walking cane, you can hold that power in your hand, and it is very suitable as a gentleman’s fashion accessory.

Although many dragon legends are found all over Europe, several of the most famous ones are from the British Isles, and some cane-makers created beautiful cane handles after these dragons. Here are some of the most famous “named” dragons that are currently available as canes:

St. George’s Dragon

One of the most popular dragons is St. George’s. It appears in many art forms, including the walking canes. There are several different versions of St. George’s dragon stories, but the most famous one is of the dragon attacking the city of Selene in Libya. This dragon demanded a child each day for its meal, and one day the king’s daughter was chosen for the sacrifice. Just as the dragon was about to eat her up, a European knight came to rescue her. After a long fierce fight, the knight finally killed the dragon, and freed the city. People were so grateful that they converted to Christianity under St. George.

In the old English legend of St. George, the dragon named Dadianus is an evil sorcerer who can change himself into a serpent. St. George trapped the evil spirit of Dadianus in the walking cane he carries for eternity to commemorate the victory of good over evil.

There are a few different artistic representations of St. George’s dragon, but the dragon wrapping around the cane is most popular.

Lambton Dragon

Another famous dragon in England is Lambton dragon from the legend of the Lambton Worm and Penshaw Hill. It was during the time of the Crusades that John Lambton caught a hideous, black, worm-like creature while fishing. He did not know what to do with it, so he threw it into an ancient well and forgot about it. The years passed, and he was gone on the Crusades for a long time. When he returned home, he found his village devastated by the worm, which had now grown into a monstrous dragon. With the help of a wise woman, he managed to kill the dragon, but his house was cursed and for nine generations no lord of Lambton would die in his bed.

Although a currently available reproduction cane with Lambton dragon looks like an Asian dragon, many older illustrations show that Lambton dragon is more like a sea serpent monster without legs or scales.

Henham Dragon

The Henham dragon was first sighted in 1668 in the British village of Henham, Essex. It was described as being nine feet long with small wings. The eyes were surrounded by strange feathers. Numerous sightings of the dragon were reported over the next year. Some just caught a glimpse of it in the distance, while others said it flew overhead. In 1669, a pamphlet called “The Flying Serpent or Strange News Out of Essex” was published and a copy of the pamphlet still exists at Saffron Walden library. This dragon was actually a hoax known as the “Henham Dragon Hoax of 1668.” Still, it stimulated the imaginations of many artists and craftsmen, who designed some very nice walking canes.

Brinsop Dragon

This dragon lived in a well in Duck’s Pool Meadow in Brinsop. It was killed by a local knight, but some insist that this knight was St. George. Yes, he was a busy guy! Most illustrations found for this dragon show large wings which is typical for modern-day images. The dragon sculpture on the current reproduction cane is actually quite nice looking, although probably hard to carry around.

Asian Dragon

Although they are not British, it is worth mentioning Asian dragons. Unlike in the Western equivalent, in Eastern-world legends dragons are usually in pairs, one good and one evil. If a good dragon wins, the village will prosper. If the evil one wins, the village will perish. They are a sort of symbol of the yin-yang relationship. One of most famous dragon tales from China is of a black and a white dragon. A famous wood carpenter was traveling with his son to a distant city. They passed one side of an ominous lake, with an island in the middle covered by a dark cloud. The son was thirsty and drank water from the lake when, suddenly, a black dragon appeared from the cloud, snatched the son, and disappeared. The father ran to the nearby village for help but no one could do anything. Half-crazed, he started carving a dragon from white wood laying around the side of the lake. He carved and carved without food, without sleep. When he removed the last chip from the dragon’s eye, suddenly the wooden dragon came alive, flew to the black cloud, and started fighting with the black dragon. After many hours of fighting, both dragons disappeared under water, the black cloud cleared from the island, and the carpenter found his son sitting on the island.

The Asian dragons have no wings, but always have four legs, a pair of long whiskers and often a beard. It is quite easy to distinguish one from the European dragons.

Dragon Claws
A dragon-claw cane is a more recent creation from fantasy novels and films. A dragon claw holding a crystal or silver ball is quite popular. According to stories, the hand of a dragon was a talisman for many wizards. The sphere held in the dragon’s claw represents the world, and he who owns this talisman will conquer the world. You can find several reproductions in this category. These canes are very popular among women interested in goth and/or vampire fashion than men and may not be as suitable as a gentleman’s fashion accessory.

Although many original dragon walking canes from the 19th century or earlier were made of wood, bone, and ivory, the currently available dragon canes are usually made of pewter, and often made in Italy. Some no-name cheaper dragon canes are made in China and India. (Don’t discount Indian craftsmanship, however. They make really nice canes at a reasonable price.) None of these canes are for orthopedic use. They are meant only as a gentleman’s fashion accessory, and cheaper ones are for home decorations.

Lessons Learned From A Bearded Dragon Owner