This simple microscope fits into and stands on a small wooden box. It has a brass stand, four lenses that can be used singly or severally, a circular stage with forceps, and a focus mechanism, but no sub-stage mirror. There are also ivory sliders, mirror, and scalpel. The “Banks, London Math. Inst. Mkr. to the Prince of Wales” inscription refers to Robert Banks (or Bancks), an instrument maker in business from the 1790s to the early 1830s.
Ref: R. Bancks, Directions To Use The Improved Pocket Microscope (London, n.d.).
G. L’E. Turner, The Great Age of the Microscope (Bristol and New York, 1989), p. 81.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Banks, Robert
Physical Description
wood (overall material)
brass (overall material)
velvet (overall material)
glass (overall material)
overall: 4 1/4 in x 3 7/8 in x 2 7/16 in; 10.795 cm x 9.8425 cm x 6.19125 cm
place made
United Kingdom: England, London
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Science & Scientific Instruments
Science & Mathematics
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Additional Media

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