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communication pipes, V. V. the steam \

valyes, R. the sliding tsIto or regn- \

dstem of cold water. Q. the^

temately. oyer each steam.

descending into the well of'


power of the steam en-

x^ of the cylinder, length/

number of strokes ]

by the power of

steam, produces the/

pounds through a/


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In this engine, no vacuum is produced, and the only pait of
''the steana pressure which is available, is that part which exceeds the
^atmospheric pressure. The cold-water cistern, condenser, air pump, and
^ cold-water pump are dispensed with, and nothing retained except
Uhe boiler, cylinder, piston, and valves, and four-way cock.-
^ The valve is frequently loaded with from 60 to 801bs. upon the
I square inch. The precaution used against the danger of bursting is
I by placing a tin plug in the boiler, which plug fuses and drops out when the elasticity
I of the steam is too great. Also the mercury in the steam gauge is blown out, and the
I steam permitted to escape through it when the pressure is too high.

In 1802, Trevethick and Vivian constructed one of these engines, and in 1804 y
yTrevethick made a locomotive one upon the same principle, B^d worked it upon y
the railway at Merthyr Tydvil; it there drew carriages, loaded with ten tons .
of iron, nine miles, at the rate of five miles per hour.

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Hb was a natiye of Dartmoath. and obtained a Patent in 1705 for connect-\

^in^ the end of the pomp rod by a chain with the arch-head of a working beam \

^ pUjinff on an axii, and the other arch-head of this beam wai connected by a chain \

^ attached to the end of a solid piston, which moyed air-tight in a cylinder. A vacuum \

^ being created beneath the piston, the atmospheric air pressed it down with a force of 151ba. \

' upon every square inch. \

In this en^ne, a man was employed to open and shut the cocks ; but a bov, named Humphrey "^

Potter, contrived to make the engine work its own valves or cocks, by attaching strings to their \

levers, and carrying the strings to the working beam. In 1717, Mr. Beighton, an engineer, availed

himself of and improved Humphrey Potter's idea, by attaching to the work-'

ing beun a straight shaft, callea a plug frame, which struck the valve '

levers as it ascended and de- scended.

A. B. is the working beam, with two arch-heads moving

on the axis C. The arch* head, B.^ is connected by a

chain with the piston rod, ^ — bTT^^^"^ - . ^'^ which moves air-tight

in the cylinder, F. A va« y^ ff\^^^ ^\v cuum bein^ produced

under the piston. P., the '^

forces down the nis-
i ing heavier than the
\ the friction and ele-
\ again.


atmospheric pr

ton,— the rod, D., be-

rod, E., overcomes'

vates the piston ,

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The vaporization of liquids is resisted by mechanical pres-
sure. Mr. Perkins availed himself of these facts> and constructed a \
cylindrical vessel of copper, three inches thick, containing eight gallons, \
capable of bearing an internal pressure of 40001bs. on the square inch ; the \
safety valve was loaded with 37 times the atmospheric pressure ; the temperature y
of the water in the generator not being permitted to expand into vapour, was about \
500 degrees of the common thermometer; a small quantity of water was now forced \
into the generator, which displaced an equal quantity of the high-heated water, and |
which instantly flashed into steam of enormous pressure, working a double-acting en-
gine upon Mr. Watt's principle.

An engine of 10-ho]:8e power has ax:ylinder only 2 inches in diameter and 18

inches in length. In 1823, he applied thb power as a substitute for gunpowder^

and projected from a gun-barrel above 100 balls per minute.

Smeaton says, a man will raise six cubic feet of water, ten feet high, in a
minute; and rates a horse at six times the power of a man. A cubic foot ,
of water weighs 62^ lbs., or lOOOoz.

To compute the number of square inches in a cylinder
whose diameter is twelve : —

12-fl2z=144-«- 14=10 3-7 -1-11 = 115 sq.

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MR. watt's

Fbom 1717 to 1768 no important improyement was made, when Mr.

^ James Watt, a natire of Greenock, and a mathematical-instrament maker at""

^Glaagow, turned hia attention to the inbject of the Steam Engine, and gare his whole ^

'^mind to the consideration of a method of condensing the steam without cooling the ^

^cjlinder ; for he perceired that if much condensing water was used, it cooled the cylinder, ^

^and if hut little, a Tapour remained that resisted the descent of the piston. He attained a \

^separate Teasel from the cylinder, and which Tessel being kept immersed in cold water tbe^

fezpansiye property of the steam made it rush from the cylinder to\

f this yessel ; and at the bottom of this teparaU co%denaer he made\

communication with a pnmp, called the Air Pump ;\

I so that the water, air, and
I drawn off, and the ma-

I immortalised the

other fluids were oomplecely

chine itself worked these

This happy conception

of Watt.

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S. the tube which conducts the steam from the boiler,
G. the upper steam valve. — I. the exhausting valve. — E ^
the condensing valve. — H. the lower steam valve. — P. the pbton
rod of the great steam cylinder, C. — Q. the rod of the air pump, N.^ —
O. the rod of the hot-water pump, which enters the hot well, B., and feeds
the boiler beyond S. — L. the rod of the cold-water pump, Z., which sends the
cold water in a constant stream into the cold cistern — and R. the rod of the pit
/pump. The three valves, G. I. E., simultaneously open by the striking of a pin on
/the rod of the air pump, whilst the 4th valve, H., is closed ; and vice vernt. — The four
pistons, Q. O. L. R., are attached to the great beam, and worked by the piston of the
steam cylinder.

\ Mr. Watt obtained his Patent in 1769, six years after he constructed the/

\ model, when he entered into partnership with Dr. Roebdck. Mr. Boulton purchased^

Dr. Roebuck's share of the Patent m 1773, and becai4e the partner of Mr. Watt.

By the advice of Mr. Boulton, in 1775, Mr. Watt applied to Parliament for the

extension of his Patent, which was- granted for twenty-five years, to expire in

1800. Messrs. Boulton aqd Watt accepted of one-third of the savings

of coal for their profit,. and two-thirds they gave to the public.

Mr. Watt's fame was now spread to the very skirts of

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Ill the Atmoipherio Engine of Saferj, and the improTed Steem
^Engine of Mr. Watt, the power was of an intermitting kind, ai it acted onlj^
^during the deecent of the piston. So long ai the engine was applied only to pumping,^
^ thii wae no defect ; bnt to drire machinery, a eonitant and nnif onn action ia required. — "^
' Mr. Watt accompliihed thia hj adopting a method that the steam should press the piston ^
f upwards as well as downwards. Bj this plan, the heam no longer pulls up the piston rod, hut is ^
i pushed up hj it. This was effected hj opening alternate communications hy valyes hetween each ^
/ end of the cylinder, the hoiler, and the condenser. Now the flezihle chain on the arch-head was in-
/ capahle of a push or a thrust ; and Bfr. Watt inyented the elegant pa- \

/ rallel motion combined of 2 straight rods, A. & B., moying ',

Ion piTots, A.& C, so that he ends, B. & D., more in ]

lares of circles with A. & C. as centres, when the I

IdcTiation from a straight line isimper-l

I ceptible, and the en- gine-heam tMlaooes i

litself. I


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Mr. Watt perceived that a continued rotatory
motion was now required to turn machinery. To accomplish
this, Mr. Watt first used two wheels, called the sun and the planet ;
when two revolutions of the sun wheel was produced by one of the pla<
net: but he finally adopted the crank, viz. — K. is the axis of the wheel which
' conducts the machinery, to which rotation is imparted by the beam, C. H. —
On the axle, K., suppose a lever, K. L, is fixed, so that when K. I. is turned
^ round the centre, K^ it is evident the wheel must be turned with it. However, there
^ were two positions in which the engine could have no effect in turning the crank ; but
f the machine was extricated by the tendency bodies have to continue in motion. Never
I theless, Mr. Watt remarked when the engine lost its power over the crank the motion
became slow and irregular, and he placed a fly-wheel on the axis of the crank, which
[ equalized the motion. He saw, however, that if the reustance or load of work upon
the engine be diminished, the velocity was increased. This defect led his genius to
. contrive the beautiful apparatus, called the Governor, viz, — ^When the speed of the
fly-wheel is increased, the spindle, L., is rapidly whirled round, the balls, N. N.
fly from their centre, the levers on the axis, O., depress the joints, Q. Q.,
draw down the joints, R., which partially closes the throttle valve, T.
and adapts the power to the work required.

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Jan. 3. On my return home, I sent Lord Conyng- 1829.
ham a present of a series in white, in a ease ; and I
also enclosed him Mr. Hamper's letter, which I had
promised him. See his replies : —

*' Windsor Castle, Jan. 6, 1829-
" My dear Sir,

" I cannot refrain an instant returning to you my

sincere thanks for your most beautiful specimen of

medals. I can assure you, my dear Sir, your present is

appreciated by me in the fullest sense of the word.

" I am, my dear Sir,

" Very truly yours,

" E. Thomason, Esq., Birmingham/*

" Dear Sir,

** I return you, with many thanks, Mr. Ham-
per's letter. The contents perfectly coincide with my
sentiments concerning the medals, which I endeavoured
to express in the letter I troubled you with yesterday.
" I am, dear Sir,

" Very truly yours.

** Jan. 7th, 1829."

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1829. His Majesty George IV. was pleased to condescend
to accept the series, and I received the following letter
from Mr. S. M. PhiUipps, Secretary to Mr. Peel, express-
ing his Majesty's opinion of them.

" Whitehall, Jan. 10th, 1829.
" Sir,

" I am directed hy Mr. Secretary Peel to
inform you, that your petition, praying his Majesty's
acceptance of the first series of your philosophical and
scientific medals, has been laid before the King, and that
his Majesty has been graciously pleased to accept the
medals, and to express his admiration of them as fine
specimens of the perfection to which the art has been

" I am, Sir,
" Your most obedient humble servant.

** Edward Thomason, Esq., Birmingham.''

I presented a series of my scientific medals to many
of the professors of science in Great Britain and Ireland,
and to nobles and others in this country who encouraged
scientific novelty, and I was highly and gratefully re-
compensed by the most flattering remarks of their

As it is a custom when a present is offered to a
potentate, that it must invariably be done by petition^ I
sent a petition to his Most Christian Majesty, Charles
X., of France, stating the nature of my achievements.

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and soliciting that his Most Christian Majesty would 1629.
he pleased to condescend to accept the series. The
King expressed his approval of the novelty of the work,
and, prohahly, as I had the honour of being known to
him, his Majesty laid it before the Institute; and having
received a favourable mention of the novelty of it, his
Majesty issued his royal commands that a series, con-
taining every medal of the French empire, in the finest
bronze, should be presented to me in return. This
magnificent present consisted of 1,037 ^^ pumber, all in
the finest order. M. de Collet, the Secretary of the
Parisian Mint, wrote to me to the effect, congratulating
me on some early day being in possession of so valuable
and unique a series, and observed that it would take
some time in collecting them, as some of the ancient dies
might be mislaid ; and in that case, to comply with the
King's command, they should be obliged to purchase
such from private collections.

His Majesty the King of Prussia presented me with
the gold medal of Merit ; and his Majesty the King of
Naples honoured me with the cross and decoration of
the Order of Francis I. of Merit.

I will notice some of the flattering and complimentary
letters which I received.

" Harbome, Jan. 7th, 1829.
" My dear Sir,

'^ Let me thank you, which I do most
unfeignedly, for the beautiful present I yesterday received
from you. Your series of scientific and philosophical
medals will go down to my family as a lasting proof of
your esteem and regard. They do great credit to your
taste, as well as prove your attachment to the arts and

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1829. sciences, of which you have been very long an illustrious
patron. Believe me to remain,

" My dear Sir,
** Your very faithful and obliged friend and servant.

Edward Thomason, Esq/'


presents his

compliments to Mr. Thomason, and begs him to accept
his best thanks for the valuable series of scientific medals
which he has been so kind as to send him. Mr. B.
trusts that so useful a work will receive the encourage-
ment which it merits.
Hill Street, Jan. 8, 1829.

** Oxibrd, Jan. 9, 1829-
" My dear Sir,

" I am highly gratified by your kind attention
in thinking me worthy of the distinction you have con-
ferred on me, by presenting me with a series of your
very interesting scientific medals, which I have this day
had the honour to receive, and which I assure you I
shall always most highly value. They will form an
instructive document to posterity of the progress of the
arts and sciences in our day, and will transmit your
name to future time associated with both. His Majesty,
I have no doubt, will have been much pleased with your
attention in sending him the series mentioned in your
letter. I shall make a point to show them at my lectures.

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which will now shortly recommence. Allow me to repeat 1829.
the assurance I have before given you, that it would afford
me great pleasure to show you our Museum in Oxford,
which contains much that would interest you. There is
a young man, named George Barnard, a relative of my
wife, who is just come to Birmingham as a clerk in the
Bank of England establishment there. As he is quite a
stranger in your town, and is a most deserving and
excellent young man, you will much oblige me if you
will have the kindness in any way to notice him, as I
am well assured that the fact of being known to be
acquainted with you must be a great advantage to any
young stranger coming for the first time to reside in

" Believe me to remain,

" My dear Sir,
" Your much obliged and most obedient
humble servant.

" E. Thomason, Esq.''

** Edinburgh, 11th Jan., 1829.
" Dear Sir,

" I thank you for the honour of your hand-
some present of scientific medals. The project is happily
conceived, and beautifully executed. I have shown them
to some friends who admire them very much, and are
desirous to know if they will be sold singly, or only in a

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1829. series, and likewise the price. I mean to exhibit them
to-morrow to my class*

" I hope you will excuse me, however, for making one
or two remarks. Though the statements are generally
correct, several inaccuracies have been committed ; for
instance, in the medal of Optics, the * index of refrac-
tion' is called the ' magnifying power,* which is quite a
distinct thing. But what vexes me the most is the bad
spelling with which your engraver has sadly disfigured
his work : we have progected for profected, and various
other mistakes equally gross. Could you correct these
by softening and again hardening the die ? In that case
the whole series might undergo a revision, and the
medals would be creditable to our national skill and
literature. But why did you admit Phrenology among
the sciences ? It should be placed beside Astrology, as
only fit to occupy crazy old women.
" I ever am,
" Dear Sir,

" Very truly yours.


" I have no objection, however, to see Phrenology as
an article of trade, since silly people must be amused ;
but call it not science/

. M

** St. Mary College, 12th Jan., 1829.

" An absence from college of a few days has
delayed the examination and acknowledgment of your
valuable and splendid present I feel deeply indebted
to you for your inimitable collection of medals, and for the

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flattering terms in which you condescend to speak of our 1829.
estahlishment Be pleased to accept my most grateful
thanks, and those of the rev. gentlemen connected with
me. They are coupled with one common expression of
admiration for the taste, science, and exquisite mechanical
skill with which the series has been executed. It forms
a collection that will celebrate your own memory, and,
through you, will add a new character to the town of
Birmingham, already illustrated by genius, talent, and
practical science beyond any manufacturing town in the
British empire.

^* I beg you to accept the assurances of esteem with
which I am,

" Your obliged and obedient servant,

" To Edward Thomaaon, Esq.'*

"Whitehall, January 14, 1829.


" I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt
of your letter of the 6th of January, accompanying a
series of medals exhibiting a novel and very ingenious
application of the fine arts to the promotion of science.

" Although it is contrary to my usual practice, as Se-
cretary of State, to accept offers of a similar nature which
I occasionally receive, I cannot reconcile it to myself to
return to you the result of labours so creditable to you,
and so gratifying to a friend of science.

" I beg to thank you very sincerely for the series of

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1829. medals, and for the flattering assurances with which they
have been conveyed to me.

" I have the honour to be, Sir,

" Your obedient servant,

" Edward Thomason, Esq/'

" Howick, Jan. 14, 1829.
" Dear Sir,

*^ I have this day received your kind letter, with
the collection of medals.

*^ It is a most interesting one, and reflects the highest
credit on your taste and spirit of enterprize.

" Requesting you to accept my sincere acknowledge^^
ments for your flattering attention,

" I remain, dear Sir,
*' Your most obedient servant.

*^ E. Thomason, Esq.*'

" No. 45, Bridge Street,\Westminster, ;;
Jan. the 16th, 1829.

" On my arrival hete last Wednesday evening I
found your extremely curious box of medals, for which
I beg to return my best thanks,

'^ I have already commenced making a most appro-
Jpriate use of them. They were last night exhibited in
the Library of the Royal Society after the meeting ; and

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to-mortrow I shall take them to my evening party at the 1829.
Thatched House.

** Believe me, dear Sir,
** Your much obliged and faithful humble servant.

" E. Thomason, Esq., Birmingham.''

** Dublin, 27, Baggot Street,

21st Jan., 1829.
" My dear Sir,

" I have just received your handsome present of
your scientific and philosophical medals, and beg leave
to return you my most grateful thanks for such a flat-
tering mark of your attention and kindness.

" The design of the work is truly ingenious, and the
execution worthy of the present advanced state of British
art I have shewn the work to a number of my friends,
who have all expressed themselves highly gratified. I
have also left it for the inspection of the Members of the
Royal Dublin Society, and shall take the earliest oppor-
tunity of laying it before the Royal Irish Academy.

" I hope Mrs. Thomason and your son are well, to
whom I beg my best respects ; and
" I remain, my dear Sir,

" Your faithful and obliged, &c.

" Edward Thomason, Esq.'*

" Arlington Street, January 26, 1829.

The receipt of your obliging letter of Dec. SI,

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1829. and of the box of medals that accompanied it, ought to
have been sooner acknowledged. This delay, however,
was merely accidental, and did not proceed from my
being either unthankful for such a present, or insensible
to the merits of so distinguished an artist. I am quite
aware how much honour your labours have done to the
town of Birmingham, and I am highly gratified by the
terms in which you have been so good as to offer to me
a specimen of the result.

" I am. Sir,
*' Your faithful and obedient servant,

" My dear Sir,

'* I had intended myself the pleasure of
calling on you to-day, but found, by a call in Henley
Street, that you were out with Lord Ferrers. I have to
offer you my best thanks for your very handsome and
interesting present, which I assure you I highly prize.
The other copy, or rather series, is for Sir M. P.
Phillipps, Bart, to whom I will transmit it He is a
gentleman of considerable fortune, and great literary and
philosophic taste. He saw Lord F.*s copy at my conver-
sazione, on Wednesday week, and was solicitous to ob-
tain one. If you should be in town on Wednesday next,
perhaps you will do me the favour to look in here, any
time after nine, and I shall be happy to shew you a few
things in my way, and introduce you to a few savans.

" Believe me,
" Yours very truly and obliged,

" London, Jan. 26, 1829 "

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" London, Jan. 27th, 1829. 1829.
" My dear Sir.

" That I have not more early acknow-
ledged your valuable and splendid present has not, I
can assure you, been owing to indifference to your kind-
ness. No one can be more sensible of your great atten-
tion than I am, and no one, I apprehend, can appreciate
more highly the spirit and talent displayed in the series
of medals, for which I now offer you my best acknowledg-
ments. I have felt anxious to make known your efforts,
in the cause of science and the fine arts, to my intelligent
friends } and I have fortunately had several convenient
opportunities, the medals having been exhibited to Dr.
Lardner, Professor D. Morgan, Dr. ConoUy, and other
individuals belonging to the London University, as well
as to several Cambridge men, by whom they have been
invariably admired and applauded. Indeed I regret
that you could not hear the expressions of delight which
a contemplation of this beautiful and original treasure of
knowledge has produced ; for it would at least demon-
strate, whatever may be the ultimate fate of the under-
taking, that you have succeded in obtaining abundance
of intelligent approbation. I sincerely hope, notwith-
standing, that abundant substantial success yet awaits
you } and that you will experience from the public a
suitable compensation for the labour, the genius, and the
capital, devoted to this elegant and attractive specimen
of your manufacturing skilL The metallic book of
science, is not, I learn from Mr. Gall, yet published,
and I have, therefore, to thank you also for having
honoured me with one of the earliest copies.

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1829. «« Mr. Gall, who speaks with great pleasure of your
attention to him when in Birmingham, speaks of your
intending soon to visit London. Should this plan be
realized, you will not, I trust, forget to give me an op-
portunity of manifesting my recollection of your hospi-
tality, when Mrs* Birkbeck and I had the good fortune
to be your guests. The occasion of your journey, I am
happy to hear, is likely to lead to a dazzling testimonial
to your merit ; not so dazzling, however, I hope, as to
throw entirely into the shade one who, if he have not
regal honours to bestow, has made, and will ever continue
to make, the most zealous efforts to do justice to one of
the noblest spirits, in regard to manufacturing enterprize,
that he has ever encountered. We understand (for Mrs.

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