Daguerreian Society

 On this day (December 
19) in the year 1840, the following announcement appeared in "The 
Athenaeum - Journal of English & Foreign Literature, Science, and the 
Fine Arts" (London; No. 686, pg. 1013):
- - - - - - - - 

  Improvement in Photography.--M. Fizeau has made such an improvement 
in this process, that the designs may be rubbed with the hand covered 
by a glove without being defaced.  His method consists in employing a 
salt of gold.  A liquid being formed of 15 grains of chloride of gold 
dissolved in three-quarters of a pint of pure water, and 46 1/2 grains 
of hyposulphite of soda dissolved in an equal quantity of water, some 
drops of this fluid, after the light has ceased acting, are poured upon 
the silver plate, after the latter has been heated with great care.  In 
this operation, silver is dissolved, and gold precipitated.  This 
improvement was communicated to the Academy of Sciences on the 10th, 
and is said to be very important.

(This improvement was indeed important and became a standard part of 
the process.  The statement that "the designs may be rubbed" however, 
is somewhat of an overstatement and isn't something I would suggest 
trying on your favorite image. --G.E.)
Posted for your enjoyment.     Gary W. Ewer     

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