Odds and quads

These lantern slides are among the treasures of the little-known Alfred Denny Museum at the University of Sheffield's department of animal and plant sciences.

July 7, 2011

Most of them are as fresh today as when they were made by Henry Clifton Sorby (1826-1908), an independently wealthy gentleman scientist and one of the founders of the university, who set up a private laboratory and workshop in his home.

When he became interested in marine biology, he also used his yacht, The Glimpse - complete with its own laboratory - to collect and prepare specimens from the east coast of the UK. In 1889, Sorby devised an ingenious method of presenting marine invertebrates as lantern slides, which could be greatly enlarged to reveal fascinating details.

The slides proved highly effective in teaching biology and led him to be acclaimed as Sheffield's "greatest scientist" and one of the university's most popular lecturers.

Send suggestions for this series on the treasures, oddities and curiosities owned by universities across the world to: matthew.reisz@tsleducation.com

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns