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Detail of glass fungus model

This section includes in-depth articles and images that tell you more about some of our collections. Follow the links below to find out more.

Read more at: Acoustics


Philosophers and scientists have always been fascinated by sound and music, and there is a long history of interaction between music and science. However, the experimental science called acoustics did not properly emerge until the 19th century.

Read more at: Astronomy


Astronomers have always needed instruments, and so there is a vast "material culture" associated with the study of the heavens. Our collection includes telescopes, charts, planetaria, orreries, celestial globes, and many other objects.

Read more at: Astronomy and Empire

Astronomy and Empire

The British Empire was built on scientific labour. Precision instruments made in London, charts published by the Royal Observatory, chronometers set to Greenwich time: all of these material tools and many others were essential for the navigation of Britain’s ships to far flung corners of the globe. On foreign soil...

Read more at: Calculating Devices

Calculating Devices

The world's oldest scientific instruments were developed to aid calculation. For hundreds of years, ruler-like tools were the most common calculating devices and their use persisted alongside mechanical innovations that automated simple mathematical procedures.

Read more at: Frogs


The articles in this section explore frogs in the history of science across a range of contexts, using the Whipple Museum's rich collections to investigate the many ways in which scientists have used and learnt from frogs in the past 300 years.

Read more at: Globes


From antiquity to the present day, people have used globes to model the world around them. Globes serve many different functions, from practical tools to representations of power, and have been produced for a variety of audiences.

Read more at: Meteorology


Natural philosophers and scientists have long studied the conditions of our atmosphere using instruments, charts, and maps. The Whipple collection includes excellent examples of instruments that measure all kinds of atmospheric phenomena.

Read more at: Microscopes


Since the microscope was invented, just before 1600, people have been fascinated by the new world it allowed us to view. This section explains how people have interacted with that world.

Read more at: Models


Teaching science can often be a very tricky business. Whether it is a planetary system, a species of mammal, or a theory of light, models have always helped teachers to explain science to their students.