Page 18 - January 2015
P. 18

The Musée des arts et métiers                       THE STANHOPE PRESS

        by Kate Edwards (10743)                     Charles Stanhope (1753-1816) was a
                                                    prolific inventor, scientist and engineer
                                                    who championed scientific, political and
                                                    philanthropic works throughout his life.
                                                    He proposed, planned and created a huge
                                                    number of engineering projects throughout

         HE MUSéE DES ARTS ET MéTIERS               his life. His great gift to printing technology
         (Arts and Crafts) in Paris was founded     was the creation of a heavy iron platen
         in 1794 as a place to preserve and         press. The press was a gift to democracy
display scientific and technological inventions.    too—the Stanhope press not only retained his
The museum has an astonishing collection of         name, but its design remained deliberately
over 80,000 objects covering some serious           uncopyrighted, so that anyone could
scientific milestones through the ages; there       build one.
is the Telstar satellite from 1969, the Cray
supercomputer, the Leon Bollée multiplication
machine and the first diesel engine to name
but a few of my favourites. The pièce de
résistance for me was one of the simplest:
Foucault’s original pendulum, suspended from
the high ceiling of the church at the end of the
museum, swinging back and forth proving that
the earth turns. Impressive stuff.

On the central floor there is a wonderful
 display of printing presses, including a
 Stanhope press from the early 19th century,
a magnificent Marinoni rotary press from
 1883, as well as formes from 1895 and a

         plate created using the mysterious (to
                          me at least, could it be
                              a bad translation?)
                              ‘Paroy process’ in
                               1799. If members
                               know anything
                          about it, or any of the
                          other images shown,
                             please share your
                             knowledge with us.

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