Monday, November 01, 2010

Harmonograph (aka Pendulograph)

Have been reading up on John Keely, an 19th century inventor from Pittsburgh who experimented with an alternative 'etheric' energy source he termed 'vibratory sympathy.' A lot of interesting and controversial claims that the scientific community eventually gave up on partly due to his staunch secrecy and eventual claims of fraud.

An article on his history of work, written by his friend and sponsor, Clara J. Bloomfield Moore, makes reference to what is known as Pendulograph, described as such:
A system of Pendulums tuned to swing the various ratios of the musical scale, form a “Silent Harp” of extraordinary interest. This “Silent Harp,” D.C. Ramsay, of Glasgow has shown to his students of harmony for many a year. A pen, placed by means of a universal-jointed arrangement between any two pendulums of this “Silent Harp”, so as to be moved by a blend of their various motions, writes, with all the precision of gravitation, a portrait of the chord which two corresponding strings of a sounding harp would utter to the ear. This spiral writing is a Pendulograph; exquisite forms such as no human hand could trace

My curiosity prodded, I managed to find a video example of how such an apparatus works:

No comments: