Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Air Pump in an 18th C. Palladian mahogany cabinet [also see 2007.29]



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Air Pump in an 18th C. Palladian mahogany cabinet [also see 2007.29]
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17.2007
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Artist

Reverend John Prince

Title

Air Pump in an 18th C. Palladian mahogany cabinet [also see 2007.29]

Creation Date

ca. 1783

Medium & Support

wood, metal, glass

Credit Line

Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, Maine, Transferred from the College to Museum Collection, 2008

Accession Number

17.2007

Copyright

This artwork may be under copyright. For further information, please consult the Museum’s Copyright Terms and Conditions.

Please suggest keywords to describe this object. Separate multiple keywords by commas. Example: road,angel,technology,toy

Scientific achievement was one avenue by which newly independent Americans could hope to earn international respect. Wealthy amateur scientists commissioned costly instruments, such as this air pump, in order to conduct their own experiments and gain favorable notice of learned British and European societies. Used to demonstrate properties of pneumatics or vacuum, this air pump was presented by College supporters in time for the first class of students in 1803. One of America’s finest instrument makers, John Prince advanced air pump design with the creation of this instrument. His pump’s case is crowned by a finial of John Locke, the great English philosopher who inspired America’s revolutionary generation. As founding president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, established in Boston in 1780, James Bowdoin II included Prince’s Account of an Air-Pump on a New Construction in the Memoirs of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, published in Boston in 1785
 

Additional Images

Image: 10.2006front.jpg
10.2006front.jpg
Image: 17.2007.detail.jpg
17.2007.detail.jpg
Image: 17.2007.side.jpg
17.2007.side.jpg
Image: obverse, top half
obverse, top half
Image: top half without case
top half without case
Image: inner workings
inner workings
Image: internal box
internal box
Image: reverse, bottom half, case removed
reverse, bottom half, case removed
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Portfolios: Collections: Decorative Arts - American   Collections: Decorative Arts