Information about history of spherical mirrors in human civilization


  1. The first mirrors used by people were most likely pools of water, or water. The earliest manufactured mirrors were pieces of polished stones.
  2. Parabolic mirrors were described and studied in classical antiquity by the mathematician Diodes in his work on burning mirrors.
  3. Ptolemy conducted a number of experiments with curved polished iron mirrors. He also discussed plane, convex, concave and spherical mirrors in his optics.
  4. In China, people began making mirrors with the use of silver mercury amalgams as early as 500 AD.
  5. In 16th century, Venice, a big city formed for its glass making expertise, became a centre of mirror production using this new technique.
  6. The invention of the silvered - glass mirror is created to German Chemist Justus Von Liebig in 1835.


Earlier still or dark water collected in a vessel was considered or used as mirrors by ancient people. 
Then as days passed obsidian mirrors came in to existence followed by metal coated glass mirrors this led to discovery of metal coated spherical or parabolic mirrors.  

A spherical mirror is a mirror which has the shape of a piece cut out of a spherical surface. There are two types of spherical mirrors: concave, and convex. These mirrors are also known as parabolic mirrors.
Parabolic mirrors were described in classical antiquity written by mathematician-Diocles . In addition to these researches Ptolemy also carried out experiments with curved polished iron mirrors and discussed about convex spherical and concave spherical mirrors in his book optics.  Inspite of these researches finding the focal length of spherical mirror was a though task but finally Ibn al Hay tham got a break through by finding out the focal length of curved surfaces using the laws of reflection.he stated that “All the reflected rays of a mirror converge or diverge and meet at a point known as focus and the distance between focus and pole of mirror is known as focal point of mirror.’’Also many scientists came to a conclusion that spherical mirrors can be divided into concave and convex mirrors.   Spherical mirrors  Concave mirrors Convex mirrors The invention of concave and convex mirrors led to many changes and have become a part of our life.



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