This “Culpeper” type microscope is made from wood, cardboard and sharkskin (or shagreen). The base is circular and has three wooden vertical supports which connect the base to the round stage. The cardboard tube is covered with shagreen that is dyed green. The mirror is mounted on a wooden hinge attached to the center of the base. A circular mark with initials is burned into the underside of the base, but the letters are illegible. Focusing is achieved by moving the tube up and down. The base is circular and made from turned wood, and has three round wooden feet.

One of the main cottage industries of the city of Nuremberg was the manufacturer of toys. In the 18th and 19th centuries thousands of microscopes like the one in the Squibb Collection were produced. Besides the Culpeper type microscope, several other models were produced including a box shaped, compound monocular microscope attached to a base with a drawer, and a “drum” type microscope. Nuremberg microscopes are rare and sought after by microscope collectors.

Date Made: after 1750

Location: Currently not on view

Place Made: Germany: Bavaria, Nuremberg

Subject: PharmacyMicroscopy


See more items in: Medicine and Science: Medicine, Health & Medicine, European Apothecary, Art


Exhibition Location:

Related Publication: The Billings Microscope Collection, The Origins and Development of the Microscope, Reginald S. Clay, B.A., D.Sc., F.Inst.P. and Thomas H. Court. The History of the Microscope, Journal of the Royal Microscopical Society, Urdang, George and Ferdinand William Nitardy. The Squibb Ancient Pharmacy: A Catalogue of the Collection

Credit Line: Gift of American Pharmaceutical Association and Bristol-Myers Squibb Company

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: 1991.0664.0904Accession Number: 1991.0664Catalog Number: M-06300Collector/Donor Number: SAP 992Catalog Number: 1991.0664.0904

Object Name: microscopemicroscope

Physical Description: paper (overall material)shagreen (overall material)glass (overall material)metal (overall material)wood (overall material)Measurements: overall: 32.7 cm x 12.6 cm; 12 7/8 in x 4 31/32 inoverall: 12 3/4 in x 5 in; 32.385 cm x 12.7 cm

Guid: http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746aa-3441-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa

Record Id: nmah_994343

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