The Antiquary, Vol. 12 PDF ePub eBook

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The Antiquary, Vol. 12 free pdf Excerpt from The Antiquary, Vol. 12: A Magazine Devoted to the Study of the Past The Inventions Exhibition, which is at present proving so great a success at South Kensington, may have suggested to readers of The Antiquary to take a glance at the history of inventions in this country. If so, they cannot fail to have been struck with the paucity of the information available on the subject. If they took up Beckmann's History of Inventions, a translation in Bohn's series, they will have been disappointed to find that, in spite of the efforts of the translators, very few inventions are accredited to Englishmen, while an overwhelming proportion appear to have sprung from the countrymen of the learned Beckmann. Again, if the History of Inventions, by J. F. L. Williams (1820), or the work under a similar title by F. S. White (1827), were taken in hand, a general and marked resemblance to Beckmann will have been observed. These works might better be termed disquisitions upon the origin of civilised appliances and methods. In a great number of instances these are traced through the ancient classics to Greece or Rome, or through the Bible to the Hebrews. No doubt, in a very large and general sense, as well as in a particular one, there is nothing new under the sun, and the term "invention" is only relative. The Pyramids may have been raised by steam-power- but we unhesitatingly attribute the steam-engine to an Englishman. It is very interesting to learn that many of the conveniences of our modern civilisation were in use in a civilisation which is past and gone- but it is more interesting still to trace the growth and development of the English inventive faculty. But the information on this subject, so far as it has been collected in books, is very meagre- and the material which has not been used, while being happily abundant, is scattered, and indeed only recently available. The history of early English inventions appears to have been strangely neglected. In 1857 Mr. Hyde Clarke wrote to Notes and Queries suggesting the subject as one suitable for the pages of that journal- he called attention to the scanty and scattered condition of the materials for the subject- but no result followed from his appeal. Beyond a few communications on anticipated inventions, and one valuable communication from Mr. W. E. A. Axon, the pages of Notes and Queries are barren of facts concerning English inventions. Mr. Axon's contribution to the subject consisted of a transcript from A Pleasant and Compendious History of the First Inventors, etc., 1686. This work is mostly founded on Polydore Vergils De Reram Inventoribus, 1607, and deals with the inventions of "the whole world." But at the end is added, "Several curious inventions, peculiarly attributed to England and Englishmen." These were rescued by Notes and Queries. Mr. Axon concluded his transcript with the remark, "These statements would admit of some annotation." But the annotation never came. The printed records of inventions which may be consulted in the Patent Office Library, and in the libraries of all the chief towns in the kingdom, begin with the year 1617. These do not include all applications for patents for inventions, but only patents granted- and, of course, for purposes of tracing the growth of English mechanics and appliances, the applications, even if refused, are scarcely less valuable than those inventions which passed the Great Seal. After the year 1617 the next great landmark is the Marquis of Worcester's Century of Inventions, 1663. About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Find more at www.forgottenbooks.com

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Details Book

Author : Edward Walford
Publisher : Forgotten Books
Data Published : 27 September 2015
ISBN : 1331481880
EAN : 9781331481881
Format Book : PDF, Epub, DOCx, TXT
Number of Pages : 288 pages
Age + : 15 years
Language : English
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