Prisme des Passages

Prisme des Passages

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Marc Secretan (1804–1867), a Swiss mathematician, joined forces with Noël Paymal Lerebours (1807–1873), a French optician, and established a scientific instrument shop in Paris in 1845, under the heading Lerebours et Secretan. Secretan became sole owner of the firm in 1854. Following his death in 1867, his heirs dropped Lerebours’ name.
Secretan introduced a new “prisme des passages” in 1847, explaining that it could be used to determine precisely the meridional passage of the sun. The “SECRETAN / PARIS” inscription on this example indicates a date after 1867.
Ref: Secretan, Instruction Sur le Prisme des Passage (Paris,1847; reprint, 1878).
Lerebours et Secretan, Catalogue et Prix des Instruments d’Optique, de Physique, de Chimie, de Mathematiques, d’Astronomie et de Marin (Paris, 1853), pp. 183-184.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Prisme des Passages
date made
second half, nineteenth century
place made
France: Île-de-France, Paris
Physical Description
brass (overall material)
glass (overall material)
overall: 15 in x 8 1/2 in x 5 in; 38.1 cm x 21.59 cm x 12.7 cm
overall: 14 7/8 in x 8 1/2 in x 4 1/2 in; 37.7825 cm x 21.59 cm x 11.43 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Mount St. Mary's College
Science & Scientific Instruments
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Physical Sciences
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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