Louis Pasteur’s compound microscope

1857-1865 in Paris
Nachet and Son

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Compound monocular microscope. Graduated grey background.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Compound monocular microscope used by Louis Pasteur

Louis Pasteur (1822-1895), the French chemist and microbiologist, used microscopes like this compound microscope during his experiments on spontaneous generation. By 1864, Pasteur disproved this theory by experimenting with fermentation. He placed yeast water in a swan-necked flask that only allowed air to enter. The water remained clear. Only when the flask was open to dust and micro-organisms did fermentation occur. The microscope was made by Nachet et fils.

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Microscopy (Wellcome)
Object Number:
A55114 Pt1
base, iron, cast, enamelled, very dark green, body tube suport, brass, body tube, brass, lenses, glass, limb, brass, pillar, brass, stage, brass, blackened
compound microscope
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • optical instrument
  • microscope
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • optical instrument
  • microscope
Loan, Wellcome Trust

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