Williams, Archibald

The Romance of Modern Mechanism

  • Overview
  • Details & Condition
  • Later printing of this charming Victorian book on engineering originally published in 1906. A very attractive copy, the publisher's binding fresh and bright. This fascinating volume describes a wide variety of technological wonders, from the everyday (trains, ships, watches, factory machines, and agricultural machinery), to what at the time were newer and more obscure devices such as calculating machines, pneumatic mail tubes, moving stairs, portable tools, fire alarms and automatic fire extinguishers, and deep sea diving aparatus. While most of the technologies are practical and based on sound engineering, the book does include a proposed "electric postal system", a series of cableways that would link the major towns of Britain and automatically transport letters and packages at up to 150 miles per hour (with the hope of eventually increasing the speed to 250 miles per hour). In addition to the twenty-four attractive illustrations, this book also has an elaborately and beautifully decorated publisher's binding and would make a lovely gift for someone interested in the history of engineering.

  • With Interesting Descriptions in Non-Technical Language of Wonderful Machinery and Mechanical Devices and Marvellously Delicate Scientific Instruments. With Thirty Illustrations. London: Seeley and Co. Limited, 1910. Octavo. Original blue cloth elaborately blocked in gilt, red, and white with a depiction of a fire engine on the cover and a deep sea diver on the spine. Frontispiece and 23 plates. Prize bookplate.  Spine just a little faded, spotting to edges and occasionally to contents.

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