Jason Clarke Antiques

Eighteenth Century Wilson Type Screw Barrel Pocket Microscope


For sale a cased Eighteenth Century Wilson Type Screw Barrel pocket microscope.

In unsually fine condition throughout, the set is contained within its original black shagreen covered case with hook and eye fasteners to the front. The sectioned interior is lined with green velvet with bright red leather surrounding the interior edges.

In the front section, the microscope comes complete with its screw-in handle and five numbered objectives all but one retaining their protective brass covers. The central section is fitted with a marbled paper and black shagreen slide case which holds six original and complete sliders, the two circular cases were to hold the slider discs and the retaining clips to keep them secure within the slider. There are some brass retaining clips remaining but no discs.

The back section contains a hand written period note which outlines the various specimens contained within the sliders, the beautifully turned screw-in handle, specimen forceps and its associated extension mount which would hold the lenses when examining specimens held within the forceps.  

The design for this early microscope is commonly associated with the London instrument maker, James Wilson who presented his invention within The Royal Society’s Philosophical Transactions of 1702 (Vol 23) although it is likely that other models were being developed at a similar or prior time.

A very fine example of one of an early Eighteenth Century microscope.

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