image hooke_r_micrographia_324
Image number: RS.466
Credit: © The Royal Society
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Louse

Date

1665

Creator

Unknown, Engraver

After

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

Object type

Image reference

Library reference

RCN 45230

Material

Technique

Dimensions

height (print): 530mm
width (print): 330mm

Subject

Physics
   > Optics
      > Microscopy
Biology
   > Entomology

Content object

nature
   > animal
      > insect

Description

Microscopic study of a louse holding a human hair across its abdomen, in its left fore and right hind claws.

Inscribed above: ‘Schem XXV’

Written in the associated description: ‘It has six legs, covered with a very transparent shell, and joynted exactly like a Crab’s, or Lobster’s; each leg is divided into six parts by these joynts, and those have here and there several small hairs’

Plate 35 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