Demainbray's polemoscope

Made:
1701-1752

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Polemoscope and case. oak; glass; speculum; vellum; pasteboard; brass (copper, zinc alloy); paper (fibre product). SCM
King's College, London| Enquiries to Science Museum, London
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Polemoscope and case. oak; glass; speculum; vellum; pasteboard; brass (copper, zinc alloy); paper (fibre product). SCM
King's College, London| Enquiries to Science Museum, London
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collections
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London

Science Museum Group Collections
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London

Science Museum Group Collections
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum, London

Polemoscope and case, unknwon maker, before 1753, but once owned by Stephen Demainbray.

The polemoscope, also known at the time as a ‘jealousy glass’, was a device that was disguised as an opera glass. Two lenses (one convex and one concave) and an angled mirror allowed users to discreetly observe their neighbours at the theatre. It once belonged to Stephen Demainbray who used it in his lectures on natural philosophy. Demainbray worked as superintendent at the King's observatory at Kew from 1768 and his collection of instruments and apparatus was absorbed into the King's own collection.

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Details

Category:
King George III
Object Number:
1927-1158
Materials:
brass (copper, zinc alloy), glass, oak, paper (fibre product), pasteboard, speculum and vellum
Measurements:
overall (assembled): 120 mm x 40 mm diameter, 0.05 kg
type:
case
credit:
King's College, London

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