Orrery, c 1740.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
This small orrery was made by Thomas Wright of Fleet Street for 'Ladies and Gentlemen rather than noblemen or Princes'. It belonged to Dr Stephen Demainbray (1710-1782), a science lecturer whose collection became amalgamated with the royal collection. The orrery shows the Sun, Earth, Moon, Mercury and Venus. The Earth can be turned on its axis directly, while the handle is used for showing annual rotation. The outer ring shows both the old and new calendars, the signs of the zodiac, and the points of the compas.