Bell from seismoscope by Brassart, 1884

1884 in Rome
Electric bell, part of seismoscope by Brassart, 1884, (inv. no

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Electric bell, part of seismoscope by Brassart, 1884, (inv. no
Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Electric bell, part of seismoscope made by Fratelli Brassart, Rome, Italy, 1884 (inv. no. 1884-63)

This bell is from the seismoscope with inventory number 1884-63. The seismoscope featured a ball-and-rod arrangement which indicates the direction of horizontal shock waves, and a spring which stretched with vertical vibration into a cup of mercury. Either action started the clock and rang the bell, alerting that an earthquake had struck.

The Italian firm Fratelli Brassart supplied nearly 150 of their seismic warning devices (‘avvisatore sismici’) to observatories, state departments and exhibitions.

For more information, see:

Ferrari, G. ed. 1992. Two hundred years of seismic instruments in Italy 1731–1940. Bologna: Storia- Geofisica-Ambiente.

Fratelli Brassart. 1886. Catalogo descrittivo degli strumenti sismici costruiti dai fratelli Brassart costruttori meccanici dell'Ufficio centrale di meteorologia, Roma. [Leaflet]. Rome: Tipografia della Pace di Filippo Cuggiani.


Object Number:
electric bell
Brassart Bros.