|A Variety of Interesting Comments from Quizmaster Don Draper
|Having a daughter who has worked with horses (standardbred and
Egyptian Arabians) much of her adult life, I have previously thought
about horses having all 4 hooves off the ground at one stage of a
galloping gait. This phenomenon and the fact that Eadweard Muybridge,
in 1877, was able to photographically capture that it happens, form the
significance of this week’s photo.
While touring the visitor’s lounge at Armbro Farms, north of Toronto, I
saw wonderful photos of trotters with no feet touching the ground. It
would have been even more unbelievable if the sulkies being pulled hit a
bump at the same time and so horse and rider appeared to be flying.
That would be an even more challenging feat for a photographer to shoot.
The numbered lines of the photo quiz suggested some kind of study and
a search for “Stanford horse study” opened a floodgate of information.
Former Governor of California and owner of horses - Leland Stanford,
wanted to win a bet that all 4 hooves do come off the ground and hired
photographer, Muybridge to prove it.
A very interesting aside in this puzzle was reading about the
establishment of Stanford University by Mr. and Mrs. Stanford. This
followed the death of their son by Typhoid Fever. One great quote I
found defines what they wanted their institution to look like - “From the
outset they made some untraditional choices: the university would be co-
educational, in a time when most were all-male; non-denominational,
when most were associated with a religious organization; and avowedly
practical, producing ‘cultured and useful citizens’ when most were
concerned only with the former.” How revolutionary and appropriate
Quiz #231 has to do with the work of H.G.Wells. In his book “The Time
Machine”, Wells talks about the study of locomotion by “stop action” or
looking at stages of motion. The concept, just like Muybridge’s study of
animal motion, one step at a time, was a fore-runner of the motion
picture industry where film consists of many frames of action stopped.
Many of us as children have likely used small sheets of paper to draw
stick-men at progressive stages of running, arranged them in sequence
and then used a flicking action to make many still pictures simulate
motion - just like the movies.
Reading about the various cameras used by Muybridge was quite
intriguing in this quiz. Thanks for triggering lots of explorations!
N. B. Quiz #231 referred to Woking, where the Martians landed in
HG Well's War of the Worlds. It is also where Muybridge's ashes are
interred. --- Q. Gen.
|If you have a picture you'd like us to feature a picture in a future quiz, please
email it to us at CFitzp@aol.com. If we use it, you will receive a free analysis of
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to walking down stairs, and even small children walking to their mother were
sufficiently interesting to Muybridge to be the subject of his photographs. In any case,
Muybridge's work stands near the beginning of the science of biomechanics and the
mechanics of athletics.
Similar setups of carefully timed multiple cameras are used in modern special effects
photography with the opposite goal: capturing changing camera angles with little or no
movement of the subject.
Eadweard Muybridge returned to his native England in 1894 and died in 1904 in
Kingston-on-the-Thames while living at the home of his cousin Catherine Smith, Park
View, 2 Liverpool Road. He was cremated and his ashes interred at Woking.
Muybridge thought his wife's son had
been fathered by Larkyns (although, as an
adult, the young man had a remarkable
resemblance to Muybridge). After the
acquittal, Muybridge left the U.S. for a
time and photographed in Central
America, returning in 1877.
Later, he conducted research in order to
improve the chemistry of his development
methods to better capture motion in his
photography. Hoping to capitalize upon
the considerable public attention those
pictures drew, Muybridge invented the
Zoopraxiscope, a machine similar to the
Zoetrope, but that projected the images so
the public could see realistic motion. The
system was, in many ways, a precursor
to the development of the motion picture.
Muybridge used this technique many
times to photograph people and animals to
study their movement. The people were
often photographed in little or no clothing
in a cariety of undertakings. From boxing,
hooves all leave the ground, although not at the point
of full extension forward and back, as contemporary
illustrators tended to imagine, but rather at the
moment when all the hooves are tucked under the
horse, as it switches from "pulling" from the front
legs to "pushing" from the back legs.
In 1874, still living in the San Francisco Bay Area,
Muybridge discovered that his wife had a lover, a
Major Harry Larkyns. On October 17, 1874, he
sought out Larkyns; said, "Good evening, Major, my
name is Muybridge and here is the answer to the letter
you sent my wife"; and shot and killed him. He was
put on trial for the killing, but acquitted of the killing
on the grounds that it was "justifiable homicide."
A phenakistoscope disc by Eadweard
Muybridge (he of the galloping horse
photographs). Note the disc says
zoopraxiscope but that is not the correct
name. It is likely that Muybridge
handed these discs out as advertising
for his new invention, the
zoopraxiscope, at the Chicago
Columbian Exhibition in 1893.
Stanford. The concept of the shoot was to show that horses that are galloping
completely lift all four hooves off the ground.
In 1877, Muybridge tried to settle Stanford's question with a single photographic
negative showing Stanford's racehorse Occident airborne in the midst of a gallop. One
of the prints was sent to the local California press but because the film negative was
retouched, the press dismissed it. However, negative retouching was very common at
the time and the picture won Muybridge an award at the 12th San Francisco Industrial
The following year, Stanford financed his next project, although it was rumored that
the two had a $25,000 wager on a bet. The motion picture was taken at Palo Alto on
June 19, 1878 in the presence of the press. Muybridge photographed a Kentucky-bred
mare named Sallie Gardner that Stanford owned. The cameras were arranged along a
track parallel to the horse's path. Muybridge used 24 cameras which were 27 inches
apart and about one twenty-fifth of a second in time. The shutters were controlled by
trip wires, which were triggered by the horse's hooves. The pictures were taken in
succession at one thousandth of a second. Domm, the jockey that was riding Sallie, set
a speed of 1:40 gait which meant that the horse was going at a mile per 1 minute and 40
seconds, equivalent to 36 miles per hour (58 km/h). The result was a motion picture of
a horse lifting all four hooves off the ground at the same time when galloping. The
prints were produced onsite and when the press also saw the broken straps on Sallie's
saddle, they became convinced of the authenticity of the photographs.
In 1880, Muybridge projected moving images on a screen when he gave a
presentation at the California School of Fine Arts, making this exhibit the earliest
known motion picture exhibition. He later met with Thomas Edison who at that time
recently invented the phonograph. Edison went on to invent the precursor of the movie
camera, the kinescope.
Eadweard Muybridge (April 9, 1830 –
May 8, 1904) was a British-born
photographer, known primarily for his
early use of multiple cameras to capture
motion. Muybridge was born Edward
James Muggeridge at Kingston-on-
Thames, England. He is believed to have
changed his first name to match that of
King Eadweard as shown on the plinth of
the Kingston coronation stone, which
was re-erected in Kingston in 1850.
Muggeridge became Muygridge and then
Muybridge after he had emigrated to
Muybridge started his career as a
publisher's agent and bookseller, but
developed an interest in photography that
seems to have been boosted when he
was recovering in England after nearly
being killed in a stagecoach crash. It has
been suggested that he acted as an
assistant to landscape photographer
not visible to the naked eye. But he and
others quickly realized that his series of
frozen moments could be used to
recreate motion. Silhouettes were made
from Muybridge’s images and used to
create Zoetrope strips. This prompted
Muybridge to create the Zoopraxiscope
in 1879. Muybridge’s photographs (such
as the mule in image 41) were the basis
for hand-painted silhouettes (such as this
image) on glass discs to be used in the
Phenakistoscope could only
be viewed by one person at a
illustrated here is a version
that did not require the use of
a mirror because the slots are
on a separate disc from the
1893 - Zoopraxiscope
Muybridge wanted to stop
time in order to see what was
1831- The Phenakistoscope
The Phenakistoscope was invented by
both Dr. Joseph Plateau and Simon von
Stampfer in 1831. It is a circular, slotted
disc with a sequence of images between
the slots on one side. The viewer would
fasten the disc to a handle, hold it up to a
mirror at eye level, spin the disc, and look
through the slots to see the reflected
images move. The slots function like a
shutter in a motion picture projector.
Without the interruption from a “shutter”
the images would look blurred. The
|Some Moving Picture Toys
Predating Muybridge's Motion Studies
Googling "galloping horse motion picture," because it just has the look of one of a
sequence, produced the answer; however, it also has the look of something I'll have to
delve into in greater depth. Thanks, Stan! Peter Norton
My first thought of what the photographer and quiz 231 had in common is that they
were both suggested by Stan Read but then I checked further and discovered the
photographer Muybridge was born less than 14 miles from Woking where the Martians,
depected in quiz 231 landed in 1898. Fortunately Muybridge had left England before
the Martians landed. I also discovered (after I wrote all the previous stuff) that after
Muybridge died he was cremated and his ashes are interred at Woking.
This one took some work!! But no Tineye!! Thanks! Jessica Jolley
That last [question] did take me a while! Thank goodness wikipedia noted his resting
place - the don't do that for everyone. I happened to catch that detail. Teresa Yu
Yes, I've noticed that it's often easy for us to read more into the question than you
intend, somehow expecting that you are looking for something arcane, like: "A recently-
discovered series of photographs showing the movement of microorganisms in a
sample of pond water from Woking, UK, assumed on very scanty evidence to be the
work of Eadweard Muybridge, is now thought to be the inspiration for H.G. Wells' War
of the Worlds." In fact, your questions tend to be rather straightforward, once the
overarching mystery has been cracked. We all expect you to be maliciously devious,
rather than a fair-minded proponent of truth! Peter Norton
N. B. I think that in plain language you are saying I am sneaky but not all the time.
Years ago, I was on Jeopardy. I got beat by a shirt salesman for the same reason. I
read too much into simple questions. It's really not a game for the over-brainy.
It's interesting to read about "Ed-Weird" in several publications. The Encyclopaedia
Britannica is the only source that incorrectly says four feet off the ground horse
pictures were of the trot. All the rest that I read correctly called the gait "gallop".
I read about Leland Stanford... isn’t great when someone with money and power does
try to do the right things!
It took me awhile to find the connection between this quiz and War of the Worlds.
Apparently, a high-speed photographic analysis was performed on a seriously
overweight Orson Welles... and both feet did leave the ground when he was walking a
fast trot! Evan Hindman
BTW: I will be traveling near Woking, UK, this summer - any requests? Mike Dalton
Hopefully, the KIDS have aced another one of Mr Stan's Hunt the Web quizzes. This
year I have several students that have the abilities to use their hands and minds to do
research, so I give each one a question from the quiz to reseach. Course they all
answer ALL the questions, proving once again...nobody likes to follow directions, esp
from Mr. Rick!!! Mr. Rick and the Quiz Kids
Notice the diagram of the photographic set-up; Matrix-style "bullet-time" photography
in 1878. Tamura Jones
|Comments from Our Readers
The zoetrope was
invented in 1834 by
William Horner, who
originally called it a
Daedalum ("wheel of the
Devil"). It was based on
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The device appears to
have been one of the
primary inspirations for
Thomas Edison and
the first commercial
film exhibition system.
Sallie Gardner at a Gallop
was an early production
experiment on June 19,
1878 that led to the
development of motion
pictures. The motion picture
consists of 24 photographs
in a fast-motion series that
were shown on a
photographs were taken by
Eadweard Muybridge, who
was commissioned to
produce them by Leland
Carleton E. Watkins, but there is little evidence of this. Muybridge began to build his
reputation in 1867 with photos of Yosemite and San Francisco (many of the Yosemite
photographs reproduced the same scenes taken by Watkins). Muybridge quickly
became famous for his landscape photographs, which showed the grandeur and
expansiveness of the West. The images were published under the pseudonym “Helios.”
In 1872, businessman and former California governor Leland Stanford hired Muybridge
to settle a question (not a bet, as is popularly believed): Stanford claimed, contrary to
popular belief, that there was a point in a horse's full gallop when all four hooves were
off the ground. By 1878, Muybridge had successfully photographed a horse in fast
motion using a series of fifty cameras. Each of the cameras were arranged along a
track parallel to the horse's, and each of the camera shutters were controlled by trip
wires which were triggered by the horse's hooves. This series of photos, taken at what
is now Stanford University, is called The Horse in Motion, and shows that, indeed, the
How It Works
A thaumatrope is a small disc, held on opposite sides
of its circumference by pieces of string. An image is
drawn on each side of the disc, and is selected in such
a way that when the disc is spun, the two images
appear to become superimposed. To spin the disc, one
string is held in a hand, and the disc is rotated to wind
the string. Then, both strings are held, and the disc is
allowed to rotate. Gently stretching the strings will
ensure that they continue to unwind and rewind. This
motion causes the disc to rotate, first in one direction
and then in the opposite. The faster the disc rotates,
the greater the clarity of the illusion.
Although the thaumatrope does not produce animated
scenes, it relies on the same persistence of vision
principle that other optical toys use to create illusions
of motion. Persistence of vision is the eye's ability to
retain an image for roughly 1/20 of a second after the
object is gone. In this case, the eye continues to see
the two images on either side of the thaumatrope
shortly after each has disappeared. As the
thaumatrope spins, the series of quick flashes is
interpreted as one continuous image.
An example has a bird on one side, and a cage on the
other. When spun, the bird appears to be in its cage.
The bird-cage pair of images were used on the first
thaumatrope, and is the most common one seen on
What Became of It
Most pairs of thaumatrope images were pictures that
did not imply motion, such as running animals or
dancing people. A thaumatrope could only take two
images and merge them, essentially creating one still
image from two. The phenakistoscope was a great
improvement on the thaumatrope, creating one moving
image from several stills, and became the first optical
toy to create a true illusion of motion.
|Zoopraxiscope vs Phenakistoscope
What's the Diff?
|Answer to Quiz #255
May 2, 2010
1. What was the significance of this photograph?
2. What does it have to do with Stanford?
3. What does the photographer and Quiz #231 have in common?
|Suggested by long time Quizmaster Stan Read
1. It is one of a series of photoraphs that
proved that all four legs of a horse were sometimes off the ground at one time.
2. Eadweard Muybridge produced the series
to satisfy a bet made by Leland Stanford, President of Stanford Univeristy.
3. Eadweard Muybridge's ashes were buried in Woking,
the site of the Martian landing in HG Wells' War of the Worlds.
Muybridge was born a few miles away in Kingston-on-Thames,
where guns were set up to fire against the Martians.
|but was more convenient since it did not require a
viewing mirror and allowed more than one person to
use it at the same time. Horner's invention strangely
became forgotten for nearly thirty years until 1867,
when it became patented in England by M. Bradley, and
in America by William F. Lincoln. Lincoln renamed the
Daedalum, giving it the name of "zoetrope," or "wheel
How It Works
The zoetrope is the third major optical toy, after the
thaumatrope and phenakistoscope, that uses the
persistence of motion principle to create an illusion of
motion. It consists of a simple drum with an open top,
supported on a central axis. A sequence of
hand-drawn pictures on strips of paper are placed
around the inner bottom of the drum. Slots are cut at
equal distances around the outer surface of the drum,
just above where the picture strips were to be
To create an illusion of motion, the drum is spun; the
faster the rate of spin, the smoother the progression of
images. A viewer can look through the wall of the
zoetrope from any point around it, and see a rapid
progression of images. Because of its design, more
than one person could use the zoetrope at the same