Drawings of the Analytical Engine

part of archive:
The Babbage Papers
Babbage, Charles

These drawings show the calculating mechanisms of the Analytical Engine during Babbage's first phase of work on it between 1833 - 1848. Most of the drawings show details of the mechanical sub-assemblies of the machine, such as carry mechanisms and counters. Other drawings show the physical arrangement of these sub-assemblies in a series of 'plans'. These plan drawings show the interconnections of the sub-assemblies and demonstrate some of the functional arrangement for the logical structure of the machine.

About 30 distinct 'plans' were developed between 1833 - 1848. Whilst Babbage's first phase of work on the Analytical Engine dates between 1833 -1848, the dates of the drawings start and end a year later, from 1834 - 1849.


183 drawings
System of Arrangement:
The series is arranged alpha-numerically in date order, although some of the drawings are numbered out of the date sequence. The drawings were originally listed by H. P. Babbage in 'Babbage's Calculating Engines', Spon, E and F, Strand, London, 1889. Drawings relating to the Difference Engine No. 2 are now listed in Series B. However some entries remain in Series A for cross-referencing purposes and because some, relating to the stereotype printing mechanism, also pertain to the Analytical Engine. Drawings relating to the second phase of work on the Analytical Engine, between 1857 - 1871 are described in Series P.

Browse this archive