Early engraving of a zoetrope, 1635.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Early engraving of a zoetrope, 1635. Plate taken from John Bate's 'The Mysteries of Nature and Art' (1635). This highly influential book contains, amongst many other things, an early illustration and description of a zoetrope. A zoetrope is cylinder with a series of pictures on the inner surface that, when rotated and viewed through the slits, give an impresion of continuous motion. It wasn't until the 1860s, when several patents were obtained, that the zoetrope appeared on the market.