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Wrapper from the Photographic Experiments of Sir John Herschel, c.1840

Inventory Number: 81918
Object Type:
Persons: Sir John Frederick William Herschel
Date Created:
Accession Number: 1928-71
Brief Description: Loosely folded packet made from a piece of scrap paper, the inside containing a page from a manuscript draft in Herschel's hand commenting on the editing or amendment of a text (?or an act of Parliament) relating to numerical terminology, probably in connection with decimalisation. The paper also bears a brownish varnish stain. The wrapper (packet 1 in the Museum's numbering) contains 43 engraved (etc.) prints that were used for contact copying in Herschel's photographic experiments, and a few other items. That he retained and re-used some of these prints is important evidence of the scientific seriousness of Herschel's photographic researches as chemical experiments, as they constitute the test objects and control (which camera images cannot provide) necessary to make it possible to evaluate, compare, and repeat the experiments.
For fuller descriptive and historical commentary see narratives.
Primary Inscriptions: 'Small | Engravings' [in Herschel's hand].
Provenance: Presented by Miss Herschel and Lady Lubbock in 1928. They were the two surviving and youngest children of Sir John Herschel (Francisca and Constance).
Collection Group: Herschel's Photographic Experiments
Material(s): Paper


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