Chest microscope formerly owned by Pope Benedict XIV

Made:
1701-1730 in Italy

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group
The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Chest microscope, very ornate, formerly owned by Pope Benedict XIV (1675-1758)

The high level of decoration reflects the status of this microscope’s former owner, Pope Benedict XIV. This is an example of a chest microscope, which were popular from the mid 1700s and throughout the 1800s. The microscope folds into the chest, which protects the tube as well as making the microscope portable – although this is quite a large example, measuring 395 mm high and 215 mm in width. The lenses are also adjustable in height. The top lens is protected by a brass cover and there is a drawer to store slides.

Details

Category:
Microscopy (Wellcome)
Collection:
Sir Henry Wellcome's Museum Collection
Materials:
base, boxwood, inlay, base, walnut, body tube, ivory, body tube, lignum vitae, body tube, shagreen, feet, brass, pillar, brass and stage, brass
Identifier:
A56294
type:
microscope
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • optical instrument