Telescope (detail)

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probably made in London

Postcard of Telescope (detail).
© National Museums Scotland

Telescope (detail)

This is a detail of a refracting telescope made between 1761 and 1766, probably by Peter Dollond (1731-1820), a scientific instrument maker based in London.

The single draw is marked 'P. DOLLOND/ Strand/ LONDON'.

In 1758, Dollond's father, John, a Spitalfields weaver, patented his achromatic doublet lens. In 1765, a further improvement was made by Dollond himself using a double-concave flint glass cemented to two double convex lenses of crown glass. However, the patent was disputed by other London optical instrument makers, although not very successfully.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-190-002-254-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  T.1967.137
Date: 1761 - 1766
Between 1761 and 1766
Material: Mahogany tube, brass bound ends, brass draw. Inscription: P DOLLOND / Strand / LONDON
Dimensions: 37.06" L; 1.38" aperture
What: Telescope, single draw
Subject: 3. ASTRONOMY, Refracting telescopes (Departmental Classification)
22. PHYSICS, Light (Departmental Classification)
Who: P. Dollond, Strand, London (Maker)
Where: England, London
Description: Single draw telescope made between 1761 and 1766 and signed by P. Dollond of London
  • For Peter Dollond, see Clifton, Gloria, Directory of British Scientific Instrument Makers 1550-1851. London: 1995, p 87 
  • For the invention of the achromatic telescope, see King, Henry C., The History of the Telescope. New York: 1955, chapter 8, pp 144-75 
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