Hero of Alexandria mentioned about the earliest form of Thermometer

Hero of Alexandria mentioned about the earliest form of Thermometer


A Brief History Of the Thermometer In 550 Words

I still remember the days when I was a 6-year-old kid, and my mother comes with a glass stick (when I am sick,) then she tells me, “open the mouth darling.” I asked her, “What’s it, mom.” Then she says, “It’s a Thermometer darling. It’s going to tell whether you are still sick or not.” Now the years have passed, and I know what she was doing with the glass stick.

Also, we had an old-school temperature meter in a framed structure, and I used to watch it closely for minutes to see that red mercury rise. Those are great memories. The memories made me write an article about the history of Thermometer, and I wanted to do it within a 550 words limit.

* In the 2nd century BC, the Greek Physicist–Hero of Alexandria mentioned about the earliest form of Thermometer (it was a temperature measuring equipment “a primitive type of thermoscope.”)

* In 1624,  Leurechon wrote a book  “Recreation Mathematique,” and he mentioned about the Thermometer (the word) there.

* In 1718, Viviani wrote a book “life of Galileo,” and according to the book; Galileo produced the first Thermometer in 1592.

In “Biography of Galileo” by Nelli, he published some letters that  Francesco Sagredo of Venice wrote to Galileo, and the letters further prove that Galileo invented the useful Thermometer.

It seems that Francesco Sagredo had improved Galileo’s instrument (according to the letters.) Also, they had made the Thermometer at the Glass Works of Murano. Wine and water were the liquids they had used. The first instruments measured the air temperatures, and water and wine were the indicators in the tube, but no liquid in the bulb.


* Frenchman Rev is the first person who filled the Thermometer with liquid, and his writings to his father in 1632 describes his Thermometer (he had filled the bulb with wine.)

* Galileo’s grandson, Cosimo; burnt most of Galileo’s manuscript, and Viviani, a pupil of Galileo, circulated some of the manuscripts and included some in his book. According to Viviani’s book, the invention date is between 1692 and 1597.

* In 1611, Sanctorius in his writings, “Commentaries on the Medical Art of Galen” page 538 of the part-3 referred the Thermometer as a “most ancient instrument.” Also, he had applied the Thermometer to physiological researches.

* The upper end of the Thermometer was left open to the air by all the inventors until Sagredo the Duke of Tuscany Ferdinand II in 1654, produced the first closed Thermometer.

* In 1653, Athanasius Kircher mentioned about the first mercury-filled Thermometer. Anyway, Academia del Cimento in 1657 appears to produce a mercury-filled Thermometer.

* In 1664, Robert Hooke worked on the Thermometer, and he mentioned it in his book “Micrographia.”

Well, I went to Wikipedia and looked for the History of the Thermometer (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermometer#History.) It has a summary of the history and visiting the page would give you a good understanding of the history of the Thermometer.

* Between (1668–1738,) Herman Boerhaave included the Thermometer readings to clinical practice.

* In 1999, Dr. Francesco Pompei invented a great product for the medical industry. It scans the forehead and gives a medically accurate temperature in about two seconds (non-invasive method.)

OK, I am ending the brief history at this point. Hope you enjoyed it.


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