Vignette from a lithographic plate showing a woman reading by light from a chandelier and candles. Oil from whales, especially sperm whales, was widely used for lamps during the 19th century. Taken from 'The Whale' in 'Graphic Illustrations of Animals - showing their utility to man in their services during life, and uses after death' (1845), illustrated by Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins and R K Thomas, and published by Thomas Varty. Printed by J Graf, C Graf, Day & Haghe.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library