Q:

Who were Hans and Zacharias Janssen?

A:

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Hans and Zacharias Janssen were a Dutch father and son accredited with the creation of the first microscope. Both lived in the Netherlands and were working with each other as spectacle makers.

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Hans and Zacharias created the first microscopes through experimenting with different lenses placed at the ends of tubes. Zacharias is typically given credit as the creator of the first microscope, but his birth records suggest his father played an essential role in its creation due to his young age. Records detailing Zacharias' life were destroyed during the bombing of Middelburg by the Germans during World War II.

The most well-known version of their microscope was an adjustable sheath consisting of three different tubes with a bi-convex lens as the eyepiece and a plano-convex objective lens. The lenses were placed at the ends of the tube. Adjusting the tubes allowed for magnification of an item up to ten times its size. It was intended as a hand-held device. The design was considered highly complex, when it was created, and served as the basis of future microscope technology. Anton van Leeuwenhoek and Robert Hooke improved on the design in the 17th century, allowing for the observation of objects as small as diatoms and individual cells.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Who invented or discovered the first microscope?

    A:

    Two spectacle makers, Zacharias Jansen and his father, Hans Jansen, made the first microscope toward the end of the 16th century. This first microscope consisted of lenses put into a hollow tube, creating much larger images than any magnifying glass.

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  • Q:

    What year was the microscope invented?

    A:

    Although there is no single inventor of the microscope, in 1595, Zacharias Janssen and his father, Hans, invented the first compound microscope. Both glasses makers, their invention proved that a series of lenses inside a tube creates an enlarged image.

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  • Q:

    Who invented the microscope?

    A:

    Zacharias Janssen is the Dutch spectacle maker who is widely credited as the inventor of the first compound microscope. Although many of the archives surrounding Janssen's invention have been lost, historians believe that Zacharias and his father Hans invented the first microscope at some point in the 1590s.

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  • 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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