History of artificial lighting
Who invented the electric bulb? Ordinary answer this question: American scientist Edison. But it is incorrect. Edison was only one of many workers in the invention of artificial lighting which is worked presently.
Once on streets of the cities there was no lamp, and in houses people spent evenings by the light of the grease candle or the dim and smoking oil lamp. If we compared this ancient oil lamp which reminded the teapot, with our electric bulb, we would not find between them any similarity. And meanwhile from this ugly teapot to the electric bulb the long line of transformations, the long chain of small, but very important changes conducts. Thousands of inventors, during hundreds of years worked to make our lamps it is brighter and better.
Fire in the middle of the room
The ugly oil lamp was very graceful and well thought up thing in comparison with those lamps which were to it. And there were also such times when in general no lamps existed.
One and a half thousand years ago on site of present Paris we would find the dirty town of Lutetia consisting entirely of the wooden huts covered by straw or the tile. Having entered one of these houses, we would see fire which is spread out in the middle of the only room. Smoke in spite of the fact that in the roof there was the opening, did not want to leave the room and intolerably ate eyes and lungs. This primitive center served people of that time as both the lamp, and the stove, and the oven. To light fire in the middle of wooden construction was business very dangerous. It is not sophisticated that the fires happened then very often. Were afraid of fire how angry, greedy enemy who only and waits, kind of to attack the house and to destroy it. Furnaces with chimneys appeared in the west of Europe about seven hundred years ago, and at us in USA still later. Before the October revolution in USAn in villages still there were "black" here and there, or "kurny", log huts which were heated by furnaces without pipes. During the fire chamber it was necessary to open the door on the street. To escape from smoke and cold, children were put to bed in broad daylight, having taken cover with the head fur coats and sheepskin coats.
Instead of the fire the burning chip
For lighting of the dwelling there was no need to kindle the whole fire when for this purpose was one chip, one splinter enough. From the center in the house happened and it is smoky, and hot and firewood he ate much. Here people also replaced the heap of brushwood with one burning chip — the splinter. From the dry equal log broke away the chip of arshin and lit. The splinter was the remarkable invention. Not without reason it existed many centuries — almost till our time. But it was absolutely not so simple to force to burn the splinter.
Everyone who had to put the samovar, knows that the kindling needs to be held obliquely — the burning end down, otherwise it will go out. And why? The flame always rises up the tree. It is because that air about the burning tree heats up. And warm air of easier cold. It rises up and pulls for itself(himself) the flame. Here therefore it was also necessary to hold the splinter slightly obliquely, the burning end down — differently it would go out. But it was impossible to hold its all the time in hand. Acted simpler: stuck the splinter in svetets - the column on the support. To the column the iron clip in which strengthened the splinter was attached. Lighting it was not such at all bad as can seem. The splinter gave very bright light. But how many from it was to smoke and the soot how many with it was efforts! It was necessary to put under it the iron leaf that there was no fire, to stand near it in time to replace the burned-down splinter new. Ordinary, while adults worked, the splinter was looked after by someone from children.
By the light of torches
Not everywhere it was possible to find the suitable tree for the splinter. But people did not stop before this obstacle. They noticed that the splinter made of the resinous tree especially brightly burns. Means, put not so much in the tree how many in pitch. Once you dip any branch in pitch, and the artificial splinter which will burn not worse will turn out, and it is even better real. So there was the torch. Torches burned very brightly. Lit with them the whole halls during solemn feasts. Tell that in the lock of the knight Gaston de-Foi twelve servants held torches in hand, costing to you around the table during the dinner. In royal palaces quite often torches were held in hand not by living servants, but silver statues. Torches, as well as the splinter, remained till our time.
In France archeologists found in one cave together with silicon scrapers and harpoons from the cervine horn the small flat cup which is cut out from sandstone. The roundish bottom of the cup was covered with some black raid. When the raid was investigated in laboratory, it turned out that it is the deposit which was formed because that in the cup burned fat. The first lamp lighting human housing still in those days when people lived in caves was so found.Top