History of the Microscope

The Leeuwenhoek Microscope

These are typical microscopes actually made by Leeuwenhoek.
These show the range of different designs he typically produced.
All were hand-made by him at his home in Delft, Netherlands.

Leeuwenhoek original brass microscope instrument from Utrecht

1. A silver microscope from Munich.
Made from beaten silver (left), which Leeuwenhoek extracted from the
ore, this microscope is at the Deutsches Museum in Munich, Germany.
The stage and metal pin for the specimens are made from forged steel.

2. A slender microscope in brass
Naturally, silver was easier to form into shapes than brass, but microscopes made
from it were not as durable. Leeuwenhoek made many of brass which he smelted
at home.

3. The best of the bunch
This fine microscope at the University Museum of Utrecht University, Netherlands,
has an aspherical lens that magnifies 295x. A photograph of blood cells taken with
this instrument shows remarkable detail.

See Leeuwenhoek's specimens back at the laboratory. Click here for LEEUWENHOEK LEGACY site