| In 1800 Alessandro Volta (1745-1827) described the Crown
of Cups in a letter to Sir Joseph Banks, the President of the Royal Society.
It consisted of a series of glasses, often arranged in a circle, containing
acidulated or salt water, and connected by metal straps dipping into the
liquid. These straps consisted of a ribbon of one metal (say copper) soldered
to the end of a ribbon of another metal (say zinc). This was an alternative
to the voltaic pile.
The same arrangement is used in the water
The name of the apparatus arises from its circular shape.
This example is in the Garland Collection of Classical
Physics Apparatus at Vanderbilt University.