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probably made in Edinburgh

Postcard of Microscope.
© National Museums Scotland


This brass microscope was made around 1825, probably by Alexander Adie, a scientific instrument maker based in Edinburgh.

The horizontal reflecting microscope has four alternative eye-pieces, and an internal arrangement in which the main optical component is a small diameter metal speculum mirror which reflects and magnifies the image along the tube to the observer.

The microscope's optical system is based on technological advances made by the Italian botanist, G.B. Amici of Modena, who also made reflecting microscopes. This was in an effort to bypass problems met in developing microscope objectives made in glass.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-102-683-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  T.1933.65
Date: Around 1825
c. 1825
Material: Mahogany box
What: Microscope, reflecting, horizontal / box / microscope accessory
Subject: 22. PHYSICS, Light (Departmental Classification)
Who: Alexander Adie, Edinburgh (Microscope maker)
Where: Scotland, Midlothian, Edinburgh
Description: Horizontal reflecting microscope, in a mahogany box, by Alexander Adie, Edinburgh, c. 1825
  • Clarke, T.N., Morrison-Low, A.D. & Simpson, A.D.C. Brass & glass scientific instrument making workshops in Scotland as illustrated by instruments from the Arthur Frank Collection at the Royal Museum of Scotland. Edinburgh: NMS, 1989. pp 39,58 
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