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Instruments and Illustration

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The Use of Images in Edmund Gunter’s De Sectore et Radio

image of Early Science and Medicine

Books on scientific instruments have always made extensive use of illustration, whether in the form of detailed reproductions of objects, schematic diagrams to explain the use of instruments, or allegorical embellishments for title pages. This article looks at the use of images in a single text on instruments: Edmund Gunter’s De Sectore et Radio (On the Description and Use of the Sector and the Cross-Staff) of 1623. This work contains a remarkable variety of diagrams and illustrations, thus allowing study of the ways in which both woodcuts and engravings, and both simple and complex images were used to illustrate instrument texts in the early modern period.


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