Photography 1760...


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Wasn't sure where to place this @KorbenDallas please move if needs be.

In my endevours to research and discover the real history of photography (slow going) occasionally I stumble across 'fictional' stories, but are they fictional, or are the people fictional?

Here is one such story...

In 1760, a man named Tiphaigne de la Roche made a bizarre prediction.

In an imaginary story called Giphantie, mirror images of scenes from nature could be captured permanently on a canvas covered with a sticky material. After the material dried in darkness, the image would remain on the canvas forever.

This is photography. So this guy just dreamed the process up for his story?

According to usual sources...

Charles-François Tiphaigne de la Roche, (February 19, 1722 – August 11, 1774), was a French author.

His novels, written for the most part anonymously, take place in the wake of two of the great 18th century's philosophical movements of Rationalismand Illuminism, and often mix scientific considerations with cabalistic, magical and alchemical ones.

He anticipated many social and scientific inventions, e.g. photography, synthetic food, and television...

Oh really.

Anticipated, or knew?

From the book...

“You know, that rays of light reflected from different bodies form pictures, paint the image reflected on all polished surfaces, for example, on the retina of the eye, on water, and on glass...coat a piece of canvas with this matter, and place it in front of the object to be taken. The first effect of this cloth is similar to that of a mirror, but by means of its viscous nature the prepared canvas...retains a facsimile of the image...The canvas is then removed and deposited in a dark place. An hour later the impression is dry, and you have a picture”

Chapter 18 is amazing: This is photography!

Tiphaigne de la Roche – Giphantie,1760

Illustration from the book


This 60 years before Neipce? I don't buy that a guy into sciences would not have pursued these ideas, if he hadn't already mastered them or was at least aware of them. Aslo, did no one else read this book and think, ooh, Ill try that?


A few questions.

1. Could this story be some proof of the hiding of photograhic processes?

2. Is this guy another psuedo historical charactor, invented to muddy the real narrative?

3. What was happening in France which was so important that Photography was being discussed, hidden and eventually (allowed) to be made public in the 1800s??

Are these the Reasons?

Ps. The last time I google searched and went through wiki, this guy did not exist, in 20 years of Photography research today is the 1st time I have come across him...
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