Frith of London telescope, 1830, three draw brass and mahogany, in case
Stock Number: 264
A Gentlemans early C18 brass and mahogany telescope, 24 inches long when extended, in lovely condition, with the original fish-skin covered case: engraved as "Frith, London"
Country of manufacture
UK and Ireland
From 1829 to 1837, Peter Frith had Optician\’s offices and premises in Chancery Lane, London: this telescope is labelled Frith, London on the first draw. However it appears the main production facility was in Sheffield, in Arundel Street, through to 1857. This is an elegant telescope, designed for a Gentleman, maybe a landowner or a sailor. It has three draws, and a mahogany barrel with brass end fittings. The screws holding these fittings in place are original grub screws, and are still tight. The telescope is undamaged, except for a slight chip on the rim of the third lens of the objective triplet, visible in the photo. This does not affect the view through, which is excellent. Overall length open is 24\”, diameter is just over 1.5\”. Closed the length is 7.75\”. There is a winking cover in the eyepiece and a fishskin covered card tube and lid for a case: it is the case that has protected the scope so well. All threads run smoothly, even the objective mounting rings.
Ask the Dealer
I first started using a telescope in the 60s, to identify aeroplanes arriving at Yeadon airport, in Yorkshire. Then I started to collect and restore vintage brass scopes in the 1990s. The collection boomed later, in the early days of the internet, rising to around 300 in number. Since then I have made a lot of friends via the internet, advising them on how to identify, date or repair their scopes. At the age of 74 I need to disperse these wonderful bits of engineering history, because they still work today as well as they did 200+ years ago! That is the fascination....Some of my collection have already been sold to collectors spread around, in the UK, USA, Ireland, Israel, France and Germany. Several have been returned to the UK descendants of the people who made them, or relatives of their previous owners, because they found the stories on my website. Now the collection needs to be dispersed more systematically. If you are looking for a specific telescope, just ask, maybe I have one! If you want better pictures of the telescopes shown here, these can be emailed. Nick Denbow, based in Alresford, Hampshire: contact via email on [email protected]