Charles Piazzi Smyth



Charles Piazzi Smyth

EPS 1876 Exhibition

Piazzi Smyth's Camera

The 1876 Edinburgh Photographic Society Exhibition opened on 20 December. 

Charles Piazzi Smyth exhibited apparatus and some of his cloud photographs.  His apparatus exhibited comprised:

-  the original camera with which his celebrated Pyramid pictures were taken.

-  an ingenious cloud camera fitted with a plano-concave corrector, and several specimens of its work.

[BJP: 29 December 1876, p.615]


Charles Piazzi Smyth

EPS 1876 Exhibition

Silver Medal for Apparatus

The British Journal of Photography later gave the result of a "Report of the Special Judges appointed by the Exhibition Committee to Award at their Discretion three Silver and three Bronze Medals for Improved Apparatus, Materials, Processes, &c."

In fact, the Special Judges awarded just two Silver Medals and three Bronze Medals.  The Silver  awards were:

1.  A Silver Medal to Professor Charles Piazzi Smyth, for the Plano-concave corrector (No. 1031).

This was a new optical arrangement which, being placed in close proximity to the prepared plate, completely prevents the effect of the spherical aberration of the portrait or other lens, and allows full aperture to be used.

In the example exhibited this is adapted to a brass camera which has several extremely ingenious arrangements for obtaining copies of objects in rapid motion.

2.  A Silver Medal to Mr H Fox Talbot, for three specimens of photoglyptic engraving (No. 1035)  -  a process first published by Talbot in 1853.

[BJP: 26 January 1877, p.40]


Charles Piazzi Smyth

EPS 1876 Exhibition

Photographs Exhibited

The British Journal of Photography also commented briefly on the photographs exhibited by Smyth:

-  Professor C Piazzi Smyth, Royal Observatory,  is remarkably strong in his magnificent cloud-land illuminations, the result, evidently, of deep insight and very great care.

[BJP: 26 January 1877, p.45]


EPS  -  19th Century Exhibitions

Photographic Exhibitions at RSA

Royal Scottish Academy

Each year since 1861, Edinburgh Photographic Society has staged an Annual Photographic Exhibition

In the 19th century, the 1876 Exhibition and the 1890 Exhibition were held on a rather grand scale.  Both were held in the Royal Scottish Academy National Gallery in Princes Street, at the Foot of The Mound.

The British Journal of Photography described the Galleries as a suite of five rooms, octagonal in form, and from the entrance giving an open vista of nearly a hundred feet in length  [BJP: 29 December 1876, p.615]

The following week, the British Journal of Photography printed a further article on the Exhibition, taking the opportunity to 'correct a slight error that had crept into their earlier article'.  This revised description of the Galleries described the vista as being considerably over 200 feet in length.  [BJP: 5 January 1877, p.3]



Charles Piazzi Smyth  -  More Pages

BACKGROUND:       Photographer        Family         Pyramids        Astronomy   

                               Time ball         Cloud Photography      1876 EPS Exhibition

PYRAMIDS LECTURE:    page 1    page 2    page 3    page 4