Magic lantern slide of an elderly couple with a baby. The woman is holding the baby, while the man, who has a wooden leg, holds his hand out towards the infant. Magic lantern shows began towards the end of the 17th century but only became more widespread and popular in the 19th century with the improvement in lamp sources. The shows could range from simple didactic presentations (a favourite topic was the demon drink) to sophisticated shows using double or triple lanterns to produce moving and disolving images on the screen and, in the case of Phantasmagoria, an eerie, magical experience.
© National Museum of Science & Media / Science & Society Picture Library