"Jumelle Duchesse" Opera Glasses

This is a brass instrument with pearl on the barrels, eyecups and center focus. The barrels are flared. The objective lenses are 30 mm in diameter. The length is 5 cm closed. The words “Jumelle Duchesse” appear in script the cross brace at the eye end.
The French word “Jumelle” meaning twin was widely adopted for binocular opera and field glasses in the early nineteenth century. The term “Jumelle Duchesse” was used for small but powerful opera glasses with 12 lenses, in which each eye piece and each objective was a triple achromat. Many opera glasses of this sort were made in Paris. Some were available in the United States by 1859.
Currently not on view
Object Name
opera glasses
Object Type
opera glasses
date made
Physical Description
glass (overall material)
metal (overall material)
shell (overall material)
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Clothing & Accessories
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Costume
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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