A Brass and Mahogany Pulley Frame, by J. Haas, London, circa 1770.

This beautifully made device is an excellent example of a machine that does not actually perform a task but simply demonstrates a principle. The action of levers and pulleys has assisted engineers since ancient times and has been continuously refined. These machines let us move a large force using a small force, but do not multiply energy.

Henry, the 10th Earl and 1st Marquess of Exeter (1754-1804) was a keen ‘gentleman scientist’, and would have used this device to demonstrate his knowledge of such things to his friends.

REFERENCE:

Related collections