The Zoetrope was invented by William HORNER in 1834. On the outside of the cap "CINEMATOGRAPHE ENFANTIN" and on the inside "LE CINEMATOGRAPHE ENFATIN" are written before the description, while on the bottom part we can read 'M.-D.-PARIS'. It was originally called 'Daedalum', and was based on the ‘phenakistoscope’ technique introduced in 1832 by Plateau (a device based on a system of prisms). Horner’s invention was forgotten for thirty years, but in 1867 Bradley in England and William F. Lincoln in the U.S.A. renewed the patent, changing its name to ‘Zoetrope’. The device functions as an optical toy, the third of its kind following the ‘thaumatrope’ and the ‘phenakistoscope’, which were based on the principle of the ‘persistence of vision’ (the visual image that is recorded in the brain remains “visible” even after the original image has ceased or disappeared). This phenomenon can produce the illusion of movement. The device consists of a cylinder, open at the top, resting on a central axis. The cylinder has slots (fourteen in this specific exhibit) whose number vary according to the model, from which the viewer can see static images painted on a paper ‘strip’, placed on the inside wall of the cylinder and lower than the slots. As the cylinder rotates, the viewer experiences the illusion of movement. Of French construction, it projects ‘paper’ material in the form of a strip. From the period 1867-1870.
  • Date of Manufacture 1867-70
  • Country of Manufacture France
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