Gould type microscope by William Cary, ca. 1830

Gould type microscope by William Cary, ca. 1830

Stock Number: FG_21046


This is the middle-sized version of a class of toy microscopes designed by Gould and made by William Cary.




William Cary, London

Country of manufacture

UK and Ireland

Categories: Scientific, Microscopy, Mineralogy & Gemmology, Natural history


This is the middle-sized version of a class of toy microscopes designed by Gould and made by made by Cary. William Cary was a very popular London microscope maker in the late 18th century. By 1821, Cary was established at 181 Strand, London, his two nephews now also working out of this shop ultimately taking control of the business after his death in 1825. One of his employees, Charles Gould, eventually designed this well-known type of “pocket microscope”. The microscopes are compact and fold into their small mahogany cases, which also serve as the base for the opened instrument. The microscope is signed by Cary London.

Though interesting by their concept and design, the Gould-type microscopes were completely unimportant in terms of the advance of science and field microscopy, being too delicate for professional use, having low magnifications, and suffering from severe spherical and chromatic aberrations. But due to their relatively low prices, they had their role in advancing the awareness of the ability to take a compound microscope out to the open.

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IL Gilgamesh

Gilgamesh was the mythological hero of the cultures of ancient West Asia, who set out on a journey in which he sought youth and eternal life.
Fleaglass Gilgamesh is located in Israel. As an archaeologist researching the material culture of the distant past and using the microscope as a major research tool, for more than two decades I have collected microscopes from the first 300 years of existence of this amazing tool and researched the cultural context of their use. Passion has become an obsession and I cultivate the full and almost unique West Asian collection of historical microscopes. Respectively, I put up for sale surplus or interesting items from the collection. I would be happy to advise any interested collector free of charge. Needless to say, I would love to send photos, information and bibliographic references, and discuss the sale details of the items offered here for sale.

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