Octagonal Rule and Dividers Signed George Adams
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- Created Date
- ca 1750–1795
This instrument is in the shape of a hollow octagonal prism. A pair of dividers (measuring 10.6 x 1.3 x 1.2 cm) screws into one end. One leg of the dividers may be removed and placed in a hole at the other end of the scale. A slide then moves the leg back and forth for use as a scriber.
A scale appears on each face of the instrument: inches (divided to 1/10" and numbered from 1 to 6); chords; sines; tangents; equal parts of 30, 25, and 20 to the inch; and "calibre." Many of these scales appeared on sectors; like those instruments, this object would have been used for surveying, architectural drawing, and artillery positioning.
The face with the calibre scale is marked: G. Adams LONDON. In 1734, George Adams Sr. (1709–1772) established a workshop on Fleet Street. From 1756 the firm fulfilled hundreds of commissions as instrument maker to His Majesty's Office of Ordnance. George Adams Jr. (1750–1795) took over the business after his father's death, with help from his mother, Ann, for the first couple of years. Although he retained the ordnance commissions, these became less profitable over time and the firm was in debt when he died. George Jr.'s wife, Hannah, sold the remaining stock and tools in 1796. Father and son both used the signature "G. Adams," so this instrument cannot be dated precisely.
References: Gloria Clifton, Directory of British Scientific Instrument Makers 1550–1851 (London: National Maritime Museum, 1995), 2–3; John R. Millburn, Adams of Fleet Street: Instrument Makers to King George III (Burlington, Vt.: Ashgate, 2000); Adler Planetarium, Webster Signature Database, http://historydb.adlerplanetarium.org/signatures/.
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- Adams, George
- Chicago citation style
- Adams, George. Octagonal Rule and Dividers Signed George Adams. ca 1750–1795. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://collections.si.edu/search/results.htm?q=record_ID%3Anmah_905196&repo=DPLA. (Accessed November 14, 2018.)
- APA citation style
- Adams, George, (ca 1750–1795) Octagonal Rule and Dividers Signed George Adams. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://collections.si.edu/search/results.htm?q=record_ID%3Anmah_905196&repo=DPLA
- MLA citation style
- Adams, George. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America <http://collections.si.edu/search/results.htm?q=record_ID%3Anmah_905196&repo=DPLA>.