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EARLY CHURCH

Ambrose
Ambrose, Pseudo
Andreas
Arethas
Aphrahat
Athanasius
Augustine
Barnabus
BarSerapion
Baruch, Pseudo
Bede
Chrysostom
Chrysostom, Pseudo
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Clement, Rome
Clement, Pseudo
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Ephraem
Epiphanes
Eusebius
Gregory
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King Jesus
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Justin Martyr
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Matthew
Melito
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Apostle Paul
Apostle Peter
Maurus Rabanus
Remigius
"Solomon"
Severus
St. Symeon
Tertullian
Theophylact
Victorinus

HISTORICAL PRETERISM
(Minor Fulfillment of Matt. 24/25 or Revelation in Past)

Joseph Addison
Oswald T. Allis
Thomas Aquinas
Karl Auberlen
Augustine
Albert Barnes
Karl Barth
G.K. Beale
Beasley-Murray
John Bengel
Wilhelm Bousset
John A. Broadus

David Brown
"Haddington Brown"
F.F. Bruce

Augustin Calmut
John Calvin
B.H. Carroll
Johannes Cocceius
Vern Crisler
Thomas Dekker
Wilhelm De Wette
Philip Doddridge
Isaak Dorner
Dutch Annotators
Alfred Edersheim
Jonathan Edwards

E.B. Elliott
Heinrich Ewald
Patrick Fairbairn
Js. Farquharson
A.R. Fausset
Robert Fleming
Hermann Gebhardt
Geneva Bible
Charles Homer Giblin
John Gill
William Gilpin
W.B. Godbey
Ezra Gould
Hank Hanegraaff
Hengstenberg
Matthew Henry
G.A. Henty
George Holford
Johann von Hug
William Hurte
J, F, and Brown
B.W. Johnson
John Jortin
Benjamin Keach
K.F. Keil
Henry Kett
Richard Knatchbull
Johann Lange

Cornelius Lapide
Nathaniel Lardner
Jean Le Clerc
Peter Leithart
Jack P. Lewis
Abiel Livermore
John Locke
Martin Luther

James MacDonald
James MacKnight
Dave MacPherson
Keith Mathison
Philip Mauro
Thomas Manton
Heinrich Meyer
J.D. Michaelis
Johann Neander
Sir Isaac Newton
Thomas Newton
Stafford North
Dr. John Owen
 Blaise Pascal
William W. Patton
Arthur Pink

Thomas Pyle
Maurus Rabanus
St. Remigius

Anne Rice
Kim Riddlebarger
J.C. Robertson
Edward Robinson
Andrew Sandlin
Johann Schabalie
Philip Schaff
Thomas Scott
C.J. Seraiah
Daniel Smith
Dr. John Smith
C.H. Spurgeon

Rudolph E. Stier
A.H. Strong
St. Symeon
Theophylact
Friedrich Tholuck
George Townsend
James Ussher
Wm. Warburton
Benjamin Warfield

Noah Webster
John Wesley
B.F. Westcott
William Whiston
Herman Witsius
N.T. Wright

John Wycliffe
Richard Wynne
C.F.J. Zullig

MODERN PRETERISTS
(Major Fulfillment of Matt. 24/25 or Revelation in Past)

Firmin Abauzit
Jay Adams
Luis Alcazar
Greg Bahnsen
Beausobre, L'Enfant
Jacques Bousset
John L. Bray
David Brewster
Dr. John Brown
Thomas Brown
Newcombe Cappe
David Chilton
Adam Clarke

Henry Cowles
Ephraim Currier
R.W. Dale
Gary DeMar
P.S. Desprez
Johann Eichhorn
Heneage Elsley
F.W. Farrar
Samuel Frost
Kenneth Gentry
Steve Gregg
Hugo Grotius
Francis X. Gumerlock
Henry Hammond
Hampden-Cook
Friedrich Hartwig
Adolph Hausrath
Thomas Hayne
J.G. Herder
Timothy Kenrick
J. Marcellus Kik
Samuel Lee
Peter Leithart
John Lightfoot
Benjamin Marshall
F.D. Maurice
Marion Morris
Ovid Need, Jr
Wm. Newcombe
N.A. Nisbett
Gary North
Randall Otto
Zachary Pearce
Andrew Perriman
Beilby Porteus
Ernst Renan
Gregory Sharpe
Fr. Spadafora
R.C. Sproul
Moses Stuart
Milton S. Terry
Herbert Thorndike
C. Vanderwaal
Foy Wallace
Israel P. Warren
Chas Wellbeloved
J.J. Wetstein
Richard Weymouth
Daniel Whitby
George Wilkins
E.P. Woodward
 

FUTURISTS
(Virtually No Fulfillment of Matt. 24/25 & Revelation in 1st C. - Types Only ; Also Included are "Higher Critics" Not Associated With Any Particular Eschatology)

Henry Alford
G.C. Berkower
Alan Patrick Boyd
John Bradford
Wm. Burkitt
George Caird
Conybeare/ Howson
John Crossan
John N. Darby
C.H. Dodd
E.B. Elliott
G.S. Faber
Jerry Falwell
Charles G. Finney
J.P. Green Sr.
Murray Harris
Thomas Ice

Benjamin Jowett
John N.D. Kelly

Hal Lindsey
John MacArthur
William Miller
Robert Mounce

Eduard Reuss

J.A.T. Robinson
George Rosenmuller
D.S. Russell
George Sandison
C.I. Scofield
Dr. John Smith

Norman Snaith
"Televangelists"
Thomas Torrance
Jack/Rex VanImpe
John Walvoord

Quakers : George Fox | Margaret Fell (Fox) | Isaac Penington


PRETERIST UNIVERSALISM | MODERN PRETERISM | PRETERIST IDEALISM

 

Sir David Brewster
(1781 – 1868)

Scottish scientist, inventor and writer. The Institute of France elected Brewster a corresponding member. The Royal Academies of Russia, Prussia, Sweden, and Denmark each conferred on him the highest distinctions accorded a foreigner.

"The prophecy in the 29th, 30th, and 31st verses, which contain the greatest difficulty, appears to me to have been fulfilled at the destruction of Jerusalem. "

In the midst of all the varied study it is pleasant to see how David could turn his whole attention to answering, to the best of his ability, "without assistance," as he himself says, a question put by Mr. Veitch :--

"Edinburgh, October 16, 1801.

"Dear Sir, -- I received yours, and shall endeavour, as far as I am able, to explain the passage of Matthew which you have mentioned.  It has long been a dispute among divines whether or not all prophecies have double senses, that is, refer to two events at the same time, and a great many learned men have defended each side of the question.   Now, if we believe in the double senses of prophecy, it is easy to explain the whole 24th chapter of Matthew, by saying that it refers, in the first part, to the destruction of Jerusalem, and in the last, to the end of the world ; but still a difficulty occurs in the 34th verse, where it is said that this generation shall not pass away till all these things be fulfilled.   I do not agree, however, with those who believe in the double sense of prophecy, as it is contrary to that simplicity which ought to be expected in the sacred writings, and would therefore explain the chapter in a different manner, as referring wholly to the destruction of Jerusalem.   In the 3rd verse, the coming of Christ and the end of the world (or rather, the end of the age, as it is in the original), signifies nothing more than than period when the Jewish Polity and State should be completely overturned, and the Christian dispensation become more firmly established, by the destruction of its enemies, and by the interposition of Christ in the overthrow of Jerusalem.

The prophecy in the 29th, 30th, and 31st verses, which contain the greatest difficulty, appears to me to have been fulfilled at the destruction of Jerusalem. Christ might with sufficient propriety be said to come in the clouds of heaven, in power and glory, when at that time the most wonderful appearances in the heavens took place that were ever seen. The stars may with propriety be said to fall from heaven, when lightnings and great globes of fire destroyed the workmen appointed by the Emperor Julian to rebuild Jerusalem; and, if I am not mistaken, the sun and moon were actually darkened at the overthrow of that city. All the tribes of the earth might be said to mourn when so many thousands of Jews were slain in such a cruel manner, and when they heard of the dreadful barbarities which were committed upon them by the Romans. And the elect might properly be said to be gathered together from all quarters of the heavens, when the Christian religion, as it then actually did, extended itself rapidly over most countries of the known world, and brought the glad tidings of salvation to men of every description, nation, and language. This is the only consistent explanation of the passage which I can give without any assistance.—I am, yours sincerely, "

 

Frequently, in the earliest morning, when the writing and the microscope, and the Bible-reading were over, have I been awakened to listen in awe to the sounds of prayer and weeping below.

A year or two later the following touching incident and conversation took place. Mrs. Macpherson writes:— "

It was in March 1856 that I had a long talk with dear Papa upon the suffering of Christ, from which we passed on to speaking of the gratitude due to God. He said he never could feel that there was any such strong ground for a claim of gratitude as people spoke of, since he felt that he had received no more good than was absolutely necessary to enable him to do the work that God required of him. Then we spoke of the possibility of feeling any love towards God, and agreed that such a sentiment of love as is possible between man and man, was impossible between man and God. ' How can we love Him,' he said, ' One whom we have not seen ? We admire Him in His works, and trust from the wisdom seen in these that He is wise in all His dealings,—but how can we LOVE Him ?'" After this conversation, his daughter-in-law being herself led to understand how alone the love of the unseen Christ can be shed abroad in the heart by the working of the Holy Spirit, felt that she must confess this change in her views and feelings. " He listened most attentively, and when I had finished, took me in his arms, kissed me, and said in such a child-like manner,' Go now, then, and pray that I may know it too.'"  (316,317)

 

 


WHAT OTHERS HAVE SAID

James Hogg
"He has indeed some minor specialities about him. For example, he holds that soda water is wholesomer drink than bottled beer, objects to a body's putting a nipper of spirits in their tea, and maintains that you ought to shave every morning, and wash your feet every night, - but who would wish to be severe on the eccentricities of genius?"

Cozy Baker

Reflective symmetry has been observed since ancient times. Legend claims that early Egyptians would place two or three slabs of highly polished limestone together at different angles and watch with fascination as mandalas were formed by human dancers. It was not until centuries later, however, that this optical phenomenon was encased in one small tube and given a name. The kaleidoscope was invented in 1816 by Sir David Brewster. He was a man with as many facets as his invention. Whether delving into scientific research, religion, philosophy, education, optics, photography, writing, inventions, or life on other planets, Sir David pursued each endeavor with incredible energy.

David Brewster was born in Jedburgh, an obscure country town in the midst of the Scottish lowlands, on December 11, 1781. He was recognized as a child prodigy, and constructed a telescope when only ten years old. This would prove indicative of the chief bent of Brewster's work and genius. Nature endowed him with some of its choice gifts: dose observation, unceasing inquiry, and a scientific proclivity. Far before his peers, he absorbed all that was available in elementary Scottish education. Because he evidenced an exceptional aptitude for learning, his family decided that he should study for the ministry of the Church of Scotland. Thus, at the tender age of 12, he was consigned to the University of Edinburgh, where he continued his intellectual achievements. He was greatly admired at the university for his unusual academic ability, and was generously welcomed into the intimate fellowship of the distinguished professors of philosophy and mathematics. The zenith of his formal education was reached at age 19 when he was awarded an honorary master of arts degree. This carried with it a license to preach the gospel as a minister of the Scottish Established Church. Of Brewster's brief pulpit episode, James Hogg, a colleague, wrote in a letter to publisher James Fraser: " . . . he was licensed, but the first day he mounted the pulpit was the last, for he had then, if he has not still, a nervous something about him that made him swither when he heard his own voice and saw a congregation eyeing him; so he stacked his discourse, and vowed never to try that job again. It was a pity for Kirk, (the National Church of Scotland) ... but it was a good day for Science ... for if the doctor had gotten a manse, he might most likely have taken to his toddy like other folk."

This was in the year 1801, and Brewster immediately turned his great talents to two of his life-long interests, the study of optics and the development of scientific instruments. For twelve years he conducted a series of experiments that were revealed to the public in A Treatise Upon New Philosophical Instruments, published in 1813.

Brewster's treatise did not represent his only accomplishments during this period. In 1807, at the age of 26, the University of Aberdeen awarded him a Doctor of Letters degree, the highest literary distinction of that era and a truly unique achievement for one of his age. But this was not all-in 1808, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and the same year became editor of the Edinburgh Encyclopedia, a position he distinguished with excellence for more than 20 years.

In 1810, Brewster married Juliet McPherson. Their marriage, which produced four sons and one daughter, was apparently a happy one, lasting forty years until Juliet's death. It was not until a few months before Brewster's seventy-fifth birthday that he married his second wife, Jane Purnell. As well as being a devoted companion, she presented him with a daughter who became the bright light of his golden years. Very little else is recorded about Brewster's family life. It might be noted, however, that Sir D.B., as he was called by his friends, paid little attention, if any, to genealogy, except for the suggestion that one of his ancestors, William Elder Brewster, led the noble band of English dissenters to America on the Mayflower in 1610. Shortly after Brewster's death, his daughter, Mrs. Margaret M. Gordon, published a biography entitled The Home Life Of Sir David Brewster. The word "home" was loosely interpreted, and throughout 500 pages Mrs. Gordon cites Brewster's many activities, including the publication of over 2,000 scientific papers. Surprisingly candid in some of her observations, she did not conceal the fact that her distinguished father could be "irritable, impatient, litigious, and verbally aggressive," hastening to explain on the other hand that "he was a man with a strong personality, strong constitution and possessed a great personal charm when he chose to exercise it."

It was in 1811, while writing an article on "Burning Instruments," Brewster investigated Buffon's Needle theory (considered to be the first problem in geometric probability). Brewster did not consider Buffon's proposal practical. However, it sparked an idea that produced awesome scientific results. In the course of his investigation he constructed a lens of great diameter out of one piece of glass by cutting out the central parts in successive ridges like stair steps. Thus was born an apparatus of then-unequaled power-the polyzonal lens-a lens constructed by building it on several circular segments. This useful discovery, which created light-stabs of brilliance that could pierce far into the night, was later perfected and named after French physicist A. Fresnel, and resulted in the lighthouse as we know it today.

This breakthrough was followed by yet other honors. Brewster was admitted to the Royal Society of London, and was later awarded the Rumford gold and silver medal for his theory on the polarization of light. Ambient light, which comprises most of the light we encounter every day, is a collection of light waves vibrating in all directions. When light is reflected or it passes through certain materials, the waves tend to vibrate in a single direction. Light that vibrates in this more orderly fashion is polarized. Brewster discovered a simple way to calculate the angle at which light must strike a substance for maximum polarization. Brewster's Angle is useful in all kinds of practical applications, from adjusting radio signals to building microscopes capable of examining objects on a molecular scale. It is central to the development of fiber optics, lasers, and to the study of meteorology, cosmology, and material in 1816, the Institute of France science. Success followed success, and in 1816, the Institute of France adjudged him 3,000 francs - half the prizes given that year for the two important scientific discoveries madce in the two previous years.

Then, as an added jewel to his already glittering optics crown, Brewster invented the kaleidoscope! It was 1816, and Brewster, at 35, was already an established philosopher, writer, scientist, and inventor. His kaleidoscope created unprecedented clamor. Dr. Peter M. Roget (whose illustrious Thesaurus, established in 1834, continues to be the most valued writer's tool next to the dictionary) paid tribute to his friend Sir David's invention in Blackwood's Magazine in 1818: "In the memory of man, no invention, and no work, whether addressed to the imagination or to the understanding, ever produced such an effect."

A universal mania for the instrument seized all classes, from the lowest to the highest, from the most ignorant to the most learned, and every person not only felt, but expressed the feeling that a new pleasure had been added to their existence.

While Brewster was granted a patent for his kaleidoscope, as well as acknowledgment and acclaim for his invention, he did not realize any remuneration. Others did, however. There was some fault with the patent registration, and before Brewster could claim any financial rewards, kaleldoscopes were quickly manufactured by aggressive entrepreneurs who sold hundreds of thousands with great financial success for themselves. As was the case for so many other great men, this was to be the pattern of Brewster's life: great intellectual achievement without worldly compensation.

In 1823, the Institute of France elected Brewster a corresponding member. The Royal Academies of Russia, Prussia, Sweden, and Denmark each conferred on him the highest distinctions accorded a foreigner. These high honors opened lines of communication for him with the great minds of Europe.

In midlife, in 1832, he was knighted by William IV, instantaneously acquiring a social status known only by those few touched by the king. However, Brewster simply continued to pursue his investigations and experiments. In short, he remained the poorly paid teacher whom James Hogg described in this manner: "He has indeed some minor specialities about him. For example, he holds that soda water is wholesomer drink than bottled beer, objects to a body's putting a nipper of spirits in their tea, and maintains that you ought to shave every morning, and wash your feet every night, - but who would wish to be severe on the eccentricities of genius?"

One of Brewster's most illustrious moments came in 1849. He was nominated as one of a panel of eight foreign associates to the National Institute of France. So great were Brewster's achievements in comparison to all others that, after examination, the institute struck the names of all other candidates and Sir David Brewster stood in splendid isolation as the sole remaining candidate. His discoveries of the physical laws of metallic reflection and light absorption, the optical properties of crystals, and the law of the angle of polarization, along with his improvement of the stereoscope and lighthouse apparatus, surpassed most scientific achievements of that era.

Brewster's contributions to philosophy and science earned him honors and accolades from his peers, but it was by his pen that he earned his living. Among his most noteworthy books are two major treatises on the kaleidoscope (one written in 1816, and a revised edition in 1858); two separate biographies on the life of Sir Isaac Newton; A Treatise on New Philosophical Instruments; Martyrs Of Science: or the Laws of Galieo, Tycho Brahe, and Kepler; Letters on Natural Magic Addressed to Sir Walter Scott; A Treatise on Optics; and More Worlds Than One.

The bicentenary of Brewster's birth provided a suitable occasion to re-examine the history of this great man. A symposium was held at the Royal Scottish Museum in Edinburgh on November 21, 1981. Each segment of his diverse career was covered by an expert authority, and it was the general consensus that in a time and place renowned for artistic, intellectual, scientific, and technical vitality, Brewster's accomplishments were unsurpassed. Quoting from writer and Brewster colleague R. S. Westfall, "He deserves to be remembered as one of humanity's prouder exhibits. What an inexhaustible reservoir of vitality."

There is no doubt that Brewster would be surprised and perhaps disillusioned to find that his most enduring legacy is the kaleidoscope. His achievements and contributions to the world of science, and to the social and cultural history of the era, actually covered a much broader spectrum, as did his numerous inventions, including the lenticular stereoscope, binocular camera, polyzonal lens, polarimeter, and lighthouse illuminator.

Wikipedia

Sir David Brewster (11 December 1781 – 10 February 1868) was a Scottish scientist, inventor and writer.

He was born at Jedburgh, where his father, a teacher of high reputation, was rector of the grammar school. At the age of twelve, he was sent to the University of Edinburgh, being intended for the clergy. However, he had already shown a strong inclination for natural science, and this had been fostered by his intimacy with a "self-taught philosopher, astronomer and mathematician," as Sir Walter Scott called him, of great local fame—James Veitch of Inchbonny, who was particularly skilful in making telescopes.

Though he duly finished his theological studies and was licensed to preach, Brewster's other interests distracted him from the duties of his profession. In 1799 fellow-student, Henry Brougham, persuaded him to study the diffraction of light. The results of his investigations were communicated from time to time in papers to the Philosophical Transactions of London and other scientific journals. The fact that other philosophers, notably Etienne Louis Malus and Augustin Fresnel, were pursuing the same investigations contemporaneously in France does not invalidate Brewster's claim to independent discovery, even though in one or two cases the priority must be assigned to others. A lesser-known classmate of his, Thomas Dick, also went on to become a popular astronomical writer.

The most important subjects of his inquiries can be enumerated under the following five headings:

  1. The laws of polarization by reflection and refraction, and other quantitative laws of phenomena

  2. The discovery of the polarizing structure induced by heat and pressure

  3. The discovery of crystals with two axes of double refraction, and many of the laws of their phenomena, including the connection between optical structure and crystalline forms

  4. The laws of metallic reflection

  5. Experiments on the absorption of light.

In this line of investigation, the prime importance belongs to the discovery

  1. of the connection between the refractive index and the polarizing angle

  2. of biaxial crystals, and

  3. of the production of double refraction by irregular heating.

These discoveries were promptly recognized. As early as 1807 the degree of LL.D. was conferred upon Brewster by Marischal College, Aberdeen; in 1815 he was made a member of the Royal Society of London, and received the Copley medal; in 1818 he received the Rumford Medal of the society; and in 1816 the French Institute awarded him one-half of the prize of three thousand francs for the two most important discoveries in physical science made in Europe during the two preceding years.

Among the non-scientific public his fame spread more effectually by his rediscovery in about 1815 of the kaleidoscope, for which there was a great demand in both the United Kingdom and the United States. An instrument of greater interest, the stereoscope, which, though of much later date (1849–1850), and along with the kaleidoscope did more than anything else to popularize his name, was not, as has often been asserted, the invention of Brewster. Sir Charles Wheatstone discovered its principle and applied it as early as 1838 to the construction of a cumbersome but effective instrument, in which the binocular pictures were made to combine by means of mirrors. Brewster's contribution was the suggestion to use lenses for uniting the dissimilar pictures; and accordingly the lenticular stereoscope may fairly be said to be his invention.

A much more valuable and practical result of Brewster's optical researches was the improvement of the British lighthouse system. Although Fresnel, who had also the satisfaction of being the first to put it into operation, perfected the dioptric apparatus independently, Brewster was active earlier in the field than Fresnel, describing the dioptric apparatus in 1812. He pressed its adoption on those in authority at least as early as 1820, two years before Fresnel suggested it and it was finally introduced into lighthouses mainly through his persistent efforts.

Although Brewster's own discoveries were important, they were not his only service to science. He began writing in 1799 as a regular contributor to the Edinburgh Magazine, of which he acted as editor at the age of twenty. In 1807, he undertook the editorship of the newly projected Edinburgh Encyclopaedia, of which the first part appeared in 1808, and the last not until 1830. The work was strongest in the scientific department, and many of its most valuable articles were from the pen of the editor. At a later period he was one of the leading contributors to the Encyclopædia Britannica (seventh and eighth editions) writing, among others, the articles on electricity, hydrodynamics, magnetism, microscope, optics, stereoscope, and voltaic electricity.

In 1819 Brewster undertook further editorial work by establishing, in conjunction with Robert Jameson (1774–1854), the Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, which took the place of the Edinburgh magazine. The first ten volumes (1819–1824) were published under the joint editorship of Brewster and Jameson, the remaining four volumes (1825–1826) being edited by Jameson alone. After parting company with Jameson, Brewster started the Edinburgh Journal of Science in 1824, sixteen volumes of which appeared under his editorship during the years 1824–1832, with very many articles from his own pen.

He contributed between three and four hundred papers to the transactions of various learned societies, and few of his contemporaries wrote as much for the various reviews. In the North British Review alone seventy-five articles of his appeared. A list of his larger separate works will be found below. Special mention, however, must be made of the most important of them all–his biography of Sir Isaac Newton. In 1831 he published a short popular account of the philosopher's life in Murray's Family Library; but it was not until 1855 that he was able to issue the much fuller Memoirs of the Life, Writings and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton, a work which embodied the results of more than twenty years' investigation of original manuscripts and other available sources.

Brewster's position as editor brought him into frequent contact with the most eminent scientific men, and he was naturally among the first to recognize the benefit that would accrue from regular communication among those in the field of science. In an article in the Quarterly Review, he made a suggestion for "an association of our nobility, clergy, gentry and philosophers," which was taken up by others and found speedy realization in the British Association for the Advancement of Science. Its first meeting was held at York in 1831; and Brewster, along with Charles Babbage and Sir John F. W. Herschel, had the chief part in shaping its constitution.

In the same year in which the British Association held its first meeting, Brewster received the honour of knighthood and the decoration of the Guelphic order of Hanover. In 1838, he was appointed principal of the united colleges of St Salvator and St Leonard, University of St Andrews. In 1849, he acted as president of the British Association and was elected one of the eight foreign associates of the Institute of France in succession to J. J. Berzelius; and ten years later, he accepted the office of principal of the University of Edinburgh, the duties of which he discharged until within a few months of his death.

Of a high-strung and nervous temperament, Brewster was somewhat irritable in matters of controversy; but he was repeatedly subjected to serious provocation. He was a man of highly honourable and fervently religious character. In estimating his place among scientific discoverers, the chief thing to be borne in mind is that his genius was not characteristically mathematical. His method was empirical, and the laws that he established were generally the result of repeated experiment. To the ultimate explanation of the phenomena with which he dealt he contributed nothing, and it is noteworthy although he did not maintain to the end of his life the corpuscular theory he never explicitly adopted the wave theory of light. Few would dispute the verdict of James D. Forbes, an editor of the eighth edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica: "His scientific glory is different in kind from that of Young and Fresnel; but the discoverer of the law of polarization of biaxial crystals, of optical mineralogy, and of double refraction by compression, will always occupy a foremost rank in the intellectual history of the age." In addition to the various works of Brewster already mentioned, the following may be added: Notes and Introduction to Carlyle's translation of Legendre's Elements of Geometry (1824); Treatise on Optics (1831); Letters on Natural Magic, addressed to Sir Walter Scott (1832); The Martyrs of Science, or the Lives of Galileo, Tycho Brahe, and Kepler (1841); More Worlds than One (1854).
See also Brewster's angle.


The University of Sydney
"Wheatstone’s reflecting stereoscope being large and cumbersome, Sir David Brewster (1781-1868) devised a smaller, more portable instrument using lenses – referred to as a lenticular stereoscope. Brewster was a scientific editor and writer who was also a leading experimental researcher, especially in optics. He invented an optical toy, the kaleidoscope, which was phenomenally popular in the late 1810s and has continued to be produced. He was also very prone to getting into very public disputes.

Brewster was among those who saw Wheatstone’s demonstration of the stereoscope at the annual meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science held in Newcastle-on-Tyne in 1838. He was intrigued by the phenomenon of stereoscopy and soon obtained a reflecting stereoscope. In 1849 he proposed his own design of stereoscope consisting of a box with a pair of half lenses and an opening to insert a ‘slide’ – the pair of images mounted side by side.

Brewster was unable to find any prominent scientific instrument maker in Britain to manufacture his design and in 1850 took a prototype on a visit to Paris where he showed it to the optical instrument maker Jules Duboscq. Duboscq began manufacturing lenticular stereoscopes and also taking stereo daguerreotypes. During the Great Exhibition, Duboscq exhibited the new stereoscopes. This was the beginning of the popularity of the stereoscope in the form devised by Brewster. With improvements in photography, especially the introduction of the wet-plate process, stereo photography (and photography generally) became increasingly popular as the 1850s wore on. Over the following decades, numerous variants of the lenticular stereoscope were devised, stereoscopic cameras were invented, and stereoscopic photographs were produced by the million.

Sir David Brewster and a Brewster stereo viewer
This hand-coloured card-mounted stereo photograph, showing Sir David Brewster and a Brewster stereo viewer, was published by the London Stereoscopic Company and retailed from their New York shop about 1860.

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