A rare single draw marine “Day or Night” achromatic telescope by Dollond of London with original leather case.
This super telescope has a 49cm mahogany barrel with a 4cm objective lens. The single draw has an early bell shaped eyepiece with sliding dust cover and the tube engraved to, “Dollond London. Day or Night”. This large telescope measures 52cms when closed, 90cms when fully drawn and has a barrel diameter of 6cms.
It is extremely rare to find a telescope such as this with a case in such fine condition. Made of leather throughout it also maintains its maroon coloured velvet lining.
An early version of this type of telescope from one of London’s most prestigious makers, probably dating to around 1830. It is certainly post circa 1810 when the fashion in engraving changed and maker’s names were written with the wording travelling towards the eyepiece rather than away.
The Dollond company was set up in Hatton Garden in 1750 by Peter Dollond with his father John joining him shortly after. John Dollond’s invention of the achromatic lens led to his award of the Copley Medal by The Royal Society in 1758 and following this success, Dollond moved to The Strand where the company was appointed optician to George III and the Duke of York in 1761.
Following the deaths of John and Peter Dollond, the name continued to be associated with royalty and went on to win a Great Exhibition Medal for “instruments for recording meteorological information on a strip of paper” (barographs). The final Dollond family member to run the company was William Dollond who sold out to a JR Chant in 1871. He continued to use the company name until was acquired by James Aitchison in 1927 whereafter it became Dollond & Aitchison. In 2009 it became part of Boots the Opticians.