A brass botanic pocket microscope
The pocket botanic microscope was first mentioned in Adams book, "Essays on the Microscope" of 1798. Its popularity lasted well into the 19th century. Similar to a model by W & S Jones, this one measures 3 ½" tall, and 2 3/8" from the back to the tip of the bar. It has a turned ivory handle, specimen forceps, and a pair of lenses that screw into the top. The lens arm and handle are hinged to the slotted bar so that the instrument can fold up and fit into a small red leather-covered box with embossed cover. In the field, a specimen is held by the forceps, and then positioned to a point of focus in front of the lens by a sliding holder in the slotted bar. This specimen holder is then tightened by turning a knurled knob below the bar. The finish on the microscope is lacquered brass, most of which is still in tact. An additional ivory specimen bottle with screw top also accompanies the set. This is a highly preserved example of an important genre in the early development of the microscope.