History of light microscopy

From WikiLectures

Antoni van Leewenhoek with his primitive microscope

The distinguishing power (i.e. the ability to see two points separately) of the human eye was not enough for the ancient Greeks and Romans. That's why they started using, for example, glass balls filled with water. Glass lenses are first mentioned by Pliny.

The Dutchman Antoni van Leeuwenhoek (1632 - 1723), was involved in the construction of simple microscopes, who observed plant cells, yeast , etc. with a single-lens device.

The Dutchman Zacharias Janssen and his father Hans (1580 - 1638) are considered to be the inventors of the multi-lens microscope . In 1590 they invented a device with two sliding tubes, with a coupling on each side.

Galileo Galilei (1564 - 1642) built a microscope designed essentially like a telescope, the whole device was several cubits long.

Giovanni Faber from Bamberg (1574 - 1629), the personal physician of Pope Urban VIII, is considered the author of the word microscope .

The shape we know today was only acquired by the microscope in the first half of the 19th century thanks to the Italian naturalist Giovanni B. Amici (1786 - 1863).

In the second half of the 19th century, the German Ernst Abbe (1840 - 1905)constructed the optical device of the microscope.

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  • SLONIM, Dimitrij. Optical microscope : basic data. 1st edition. Faculty of Biology of the University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice, 2006.