The Ophthalmology Collection

We have many items in our collection relating to optometry and ophthalmology. Our Ophthalmology collection includes many different objects used in testing vision and treating eye disorders as well as journals and catalogues of specialist equipment.

We have a range of eye baths in both glass and porcelain and a number of vintage spectacles and even a prosthetic eye.

The eye was acquired from Germany, and originated from the glass making factory in the town of Lauscha. Since the invention of the German artificial eye made of glass in 1835 by resident Ludwig Müller-Uri, glass eyes have been produced in Lauscha. Glassblowing and glass production is the main industry of the town and even glass eyes for toys and dolls are made there. The current job description of an ocularist (eye prosthodontist) requires 6 years of training and examination by the professional association of the DOG (German Ocularistic Society).

(Information from

We also have a Synoptophore Eye Exam Device which is used in the correction of squints (strabismus), binocular vision and amblyopia. There is also helpfully a photograph in our archive of a little girl using the machine in a clinic.

Below are the catalogue listings for this collection. Click on an item to view the item record and use the back button on your browser/device to return to the full list.