Zoetrope

DEFINITION

An optical device comprised of a vertical cylinder that can spin around a pivot. Looking through slits in the outside of the cylinder gives an impression of movement to drawings placed on the inside of the cylinder. It was invented in 1834 by Englishman William Horner, although he dubbed it the Daedalum, meaning "wheel of the devil." An American named William F. Lincoln manufactured it in the USA in the 1860s, renaming it the zoetrope, which means "wheel of life."Related link: The Bill Douglas Centre for the History of Cinema and Popular Culture has a page on the zoetrope. Also see camera lucida, camera obscura, cinematography, magic lantern, and zoopraxiscope.

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