Claude Lorrain Mirror
   Claude Lorrain was the pseudonym of the French painter Claude Gellée (1600-1682). He specialized in landscape drawings and paintings, and spent much of his life in Rome.

   The Claude Lorrain Mirror is a slightly convex mirror made of black glass that produces a reduced, upright and virtual image of the scene being observed by reflection in it. Much of the color is washed out, thus allowing the artist to concentrate on the forms and perspective. 

   This example is in the collection of historical scientific instruments at Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky.It was origianlly purchased in either London or Paris in 1857 for $5.00.

   This Claude Lorrain Mirror is at Middlebury College in Vermont. 


   I had thought that the only other Claude Lorrain Mirror I had ever seen was in the collection of the National Museum of American History of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., but then this example, clearly the same as the one at Middlebury, appeared on an eBay auction in January 2001.The mirror was made in France, and measures 6.25 in. by 5 in. The accompanying note suggested that the mirror was probably first used by the English poet, Thomas Gray (1716-1771). 

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