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Cary/Gould Type Microscope

Maker Unsigned

Date Circa 1840
Dimensions English Metric
Main Tube Length 4.8in 123mm
Main Tube Diameter 1.0in 25mm
Total Height 6.5in 155mm


This Cary/Gould-type brass compound microscope has a pillar with a rectangular cross section that screws into a socket on the wooden case lid. The body tube screws into an arm attached to the top of the pillar. The tube has a cylindrical-shaped upper half and a conical-shaped lower half.  The three objective lenses, each with a different magnification, can be used with the main body as a compound microscope, or they can be screwed into the arm themselves for use as a low-power simple microscope. In either mode, they can be used separately, or screwed together for greater magnification. The three lens eyepiece tube slides into the top of the body tube and can be partially withdrawn to increase magnification. It is focused with a rack and pinion that moves the stage up and down on the pillar. The concave mirror is mounted on the pillar with a pin. The microscope disassembles to fit in its mahogany case and was designed to be small and portable for use in the field.


The following accessories also fit in the case:

1. Stage-mounted sample forceps

2. Live box for very small live animals, such as insects

3. Concave glass for fluids

4. Flat glass for transparent specimens

5. Bone black and white disc for observing light and dark opaque specimens

6. Three wood sliders with premounted specimens. In two of the sliders, the specimens are mounted between very thin discs of mica.


Also included is a two page paper, A DESCRIPTION of the Improved COMPOUND and SINGLE POCKET MICROSCOPE. There is a drawing showing the parts and accessories, with instructions on how to use as a compound or simple microscope.


The microscope is unsigned, but there is a small paper label in the bottom of the box that says, M. Davis, OPTICIAN, Mathematical & Philosophical INSTRUMENT MAKER, WORCHESTER. Davis was probably the seller.


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