Q:

What did Zacharias Janssen invent?

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Quick Answer

Zacharias Janssen invented the first compound microscope. Zacharias and his father, Hans, originally made eyeglasses, or spectacles, but Hans Janssen may have contributed to his son's invention. Although the first microscopes Janssen made were crude by modern-day standards, they did lead to the development of better scientific instruments.

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What did Zacharias Janssen invent?
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Full Answer

The first compound microscopes developed by Zacharias Janssen in the 1590s were hulks compared to modern-day versions. The tripod itself measured more than two feet in height. The actual instrument was a tube equipped with two lenses, a convex lens at one end and a concave one at the other. One lens bent the light; the other magnified the image.

The first microscopes only magnified images between three and nine times the size of the actual object. More than half a century would pass before the compound microscope would be in widespread use in the scientific community.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Where did Zacharias Janssen live?

    A:

    Zacharias Janssen lived in Middleburg in the Netherlands from 1580 - 1638 according to History of the Microscope. He was a spectacle maker who is credited for inventing the first compound microscope. Since the achievement was thought to have occurred in the 1590s, some suggest that Janssen's father contributed to the discovery of the microscope. It is still debatable as to whether or not Janssen also invented the telescope.

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  • Q:

    When was Hans Janssen born?

    A:

    Hans Janssen was born in the 16th century, but his exact birthday is unknown. He is the father of Zacharias Janssen, who is thought to have been born in 1585 in The Hague.

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  • Q:

    What is the Hans and Zacharias Janssen Cell Theory?

    A:

    The cell theory states that the cell is the basic unit of life. Hans and Zacharias Jansen greatly contributed to the various parts of this theory by inventing the first microscope.

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  • Q:

    What did Galileo invent?

    A:

    Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei was the inventor of the first pendulum clock, after his discovery of isochronism, which is the time that the pendulum takes to swing. Contrary to popular belief, Galileo was not the inventor of the telescope; Galileo built a telescope based on creations by the Dutch, and it was known as a spyglass. Galileo also built a thermometer and a compass during his lifetime.

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