Wednesday 19 September 2012

Galvanic Experiments on the Dead Body of a Criminal, Artificial Volcano, etc., etc.

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A small selection of Victorian pastimes from 

Artificial Volcano
An endeavour imbued with danger

 Galvanic Experiments on the Dead Body of a Criminal
The macabre electrical reanimation of Matthew Clydesdale`s hung body

The above article is an account of experiments carried out upon the corpse of Matthew Clydesdale at the Glasgow University anatomy theatre by Dr. Ure and Prof. Jeffray on the 4th november 1818. The galvanic reanimation was performed in public, as had Mr. Clydesdale`s hanging, for murder. It is of note that Mary Shelley`s novel "Frankenstein" was published earlier in the same year.

The galvanic reanimation of the dead is discussed in this book -

Buy it for the Kindle
(or PC, ipad, smart phone with free reader) 
UK (77p) 
here, USA (99 cents) here
The Ernest Glitch Chronicles. A Novel by Roger Curry

Anarchic Experimental Science in
Victorian Weardale &
Event Horizon Powered Lotus

Ernest Glitch. Wealthy Victorian experimentalist, armaments mogul, aficionado of intoxication and big game hunting. His mansion in Weardale, England, had laboratory facilities second to none in the mid eighteen hundreds. In them Glitch, with his assistant Hodges, performed scientific experimentation of a most eclectic nature, and always with concentrated disregard to safety issues.

An eccentric and volatile person, his pursuit of knowledge was accompanied by the sort of hedonism only the very rich can enjoy. The results of experiments he and his assistant Hodges undertook were never published. As he kept no log-book, the main record of the discoveries they made are the letters he wrote to Michael Faraday.

In this book, those letters are presented, together with contemporary reports, a journal Glitch made of his expedition to Africa, and several narratives of his life. Also, reference is made to both his ancestors and, in detail, his descendants. This novel has two threads. One details the horrific experiments performed by Victorian Ernest Glitch and his assistant Hodges. The other is set in the near future, where Glitch and Hodges' descendants wreak havoc, with a device capable of generating enormous power from the annihilation of nuclear waste.

WARNING - Contains very strong language. The letters and accounts of the work of Ernest Glitch are of an appalling nature in parts, containing references to animal and human experimentation, extreme violence, Victorian drug abuse, and complete disregard for the dignity of native peoples. 135 thousand words. Buy it for the Kindle - UK (77p) here, USA (99 cents) here

 Beautiful Electrical Experiment
Spectacular tribo-electrical effect using a platinum spatula & calcium oxalate

 Valuable Transformation
Gold plating charcoal

 Very Beautiful Artificial Petrifactions
" a sort of hoar frost..."

 The Electric Kite
Lethally ill-advised instructions for repeating Franklin`s experiments

  The Fiery Fountain
Highly dangerous ingredients react, forming a conflagration of phosphine gas

 A more powerful Fulminating Powder
The subject of fulminating silver is discussed

 Expansive Force of Freezing Water
Colonel E. Williams explodes Royal Artillery shell cases using ice

 Method of receiving the Electrical Shock from a Cat
An intriguing demonstration of frictional high voltage electrical generation

 On sounds excited in Hydrogen Gas
Mr. Leslie performed acoustic experiments with hydrogen gas

 To Recover a Fly after being drowned several hours
Essential knowledge for insect life guards

 To obtain exquisite Skeletons of Small Animals
An extremely ingenious method

 The Leyden Phial
"...a painful jarring sensation is felt at the joints of the fingers, the elbows, shoulders & chest,..."

 To Pierce a Card &c. by Electricity
"....deprive a man of sensation for a time, if the head be made part of the circuit."

 The Inconceivable Shock
"...the whole company would be struck to the ground;"

 Electrical Illumination
"To illuminate eggs by electricity,...."

 The Miraculous Luminaries
"...will continue to shine for about half an hour,...."

 The Illuminated Vacuum
"...a very dense body of fire, darting directly through the centre of the vacuum,..."

 Resin Ignited by Electricity
Using a Leyden jar to inflame

 Electrified Ball
"...will pass over the surface of the ball and singe it."

The complete Young Man's Book of Amusement is here

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Unrelated to this post, below is an example of
eclectic science esoterica 

The Turbinia and Mauretania.
Turbinia's series turbine arrangement below -

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WARNING - Many subjects outlined within this site are extremely dangerous and are provided here for information only. Please don`t experiment with high voltages or chemicals unless you are fully conversant with safe laboratory practices. No liability will be accepted for death, injury or damage arising from experimentation using any information or materials supplied.