Harper's New Monthly Magazine,  11 (1885–86), 716–28.

Springhaven Ch. 1–5  [1/12]

R D Blackmore


Novel, Serial


Instruments, Instrument-makers, Microscopy, Gender

    In the English coastal town of Springhaven during the Napoleonic wars, the grand house of Admiral Darling contains the 'Admiral's favorite Munich glass, mounted by an old ship's carpenter (who had followed the fortunes of his captain) on a stand which would have puzzled anybody but the maker, with the added security of a lanyard from the roof. The gear, though rough, was very strong and solid, and afforded more range and firmer rest to the seven-feet tube and adjustments than a costly mounting by a London optician would have been likely to supply. It was a pleasure to look through such a glass, so clear, and full of light, and firm'. Indeed, 'one who could have borne to be looked at through it, or examined even by a microscope', the Admiral's daughter Horatia Dolly Darling, 'came now to enjoy that pleasure'. (717) Dolly 'could manage this glass to the best advantage, through her father's teaching, and could take out the slide and clean the lenses, and even part the object-glass, and refix it as well as possible' (718), but was 'always longing for something sweet and thrilling and romantic' which she could not find in 'dull' Springhaven 'even with the longest telescope' (717).


Blackmore 1887

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