image hooke_r_micrographia_228
Image number: RS.18180
Credit: ©The Royal Society

Clasping bellflower seeds

Date

1665

Creator

Unknown, Engraver

After

Robert Hooke (1635-1703, British), Natural Philosopher

Object type

Library reference

RCN 45230

Material

Technique

Subject

Biology
   > Botany
Physics
   > Optics
      > Microscopy

Description

Microscopic study of six seeds of the clasping bellflower, Triodanis perfoliata.

Inscribed above: ‘Schem XVII’

Written in the associated text: ‘through the Microscope, it appears a large body, cover’d with a tough thick and bright reflecting skin very irregularly shrunk and pitted, insomuch that it is almost an impossibility to find two of them wrinked alike’

Plate 17 from Robert Hooke’s Micrographia: or some physiological descriptions of minute bodies made by magnifying glasses with observations and inquiries thereupon (1665), the first fully-illustrated book on the topic of microscopy. In the preface Hooke asserts that he had discovered ‘a new visible World’.

Robert Hooke (1635-1703) British natural philosopher was a founding member of the Royal Society, elected in 1663. Before his career with the Royal Society, Hooke had been apprenticed to painter Peter Lely (1618-1680), where he learned to draw and paint. Though he did not engrave the images in Micrographia himself they were engraved after his illustrations.

Associated place

<The World>
   > Europe
      > United Kingdom