While reading one of the old books referenced in Charlie Krebs' latest post
, I ran into what claims to be the first & defining use of the term "photo-macrograph
It's in "THE A B C OF PHOTO-MICROGRAPHY / A Practical Handbook for Beginners", W. H. Walmsley, 1902, currently available online at Google Books as http://books.google.com/books?vid=LCCN0 ... 9KZKfdMTIC
According to the index, "Definition of Photo-macrograph" is on page 87 (page 104 of the pdf file):
Photo-macrography. Worcester defined Macroscopic or Macroscopical as "noting an object which, although comparatively minute, is visible to the naked eye or to the eye assisted by a pocket lens," -- usually an inch or more in focus and magnifying less than ten diameters. A delineation or picture of an object thus enlarged would be a macrograph, and if produced by the aid of photography, why should it not be termed a photo-macrograph? At all events I have chosen to coin that word and to define it as a slightly enlarged picture or delineation of a macroscopical object produced by means of a lens and sensitized photographic plate.
Earlier, on page 2 in fact, Walmsley introduces the concept as follows:
Macroscopic denotes an object of minute proportions, but visible to the naked eye, or by means of a pocket lens, and does not require the use of a microscope. An enlarged drawing of such an object to the extent of a few diameters is termed a macrograph: if made by the aid of cameras, why not a photo-macrograph? There is an endless number of such objects, which may be enlarged by the aid of a suitable camera and photographic lens from one to about ten diameters -- the limit of a pocket lens of one-inch focus. I have ventured to coin the word photo-macrograph in this connection, and descriptions of the method of making them, together with illustrations, will be found in Chapter V, under Negative Making.
(The reference to Chapter V refers to the text I quoted first, from page 87.)
Most of Walmsley's discussion following page 87 explains that such magnifications are not compatible with the use of a projection eyepiece, but can be achieved by direct projection from the objective onto the photographic plate. It's interesting to note that earlier authors such as Spitta 1899
consider such images to be "low power photo-micrography". (See for example Spitta's Plate I Fig 5, showing an entire tortoise-shell butterfly, rendered at most only slightly larger than life-size.)
I rather doubt that finding Walmsley's definition will help settle whatever issue remains about the terminology.
I, of course, interpret Walmsley's words "slightly enlarged picture or delineation
" as referring to the final image presented to the human, with a corresponding level of detail revealed. But reasonable people can differ about this, and I expect that they will.
In any event, it's nice to push the chain of references one notch farther back.
And I guess it's also clear that OED missed finding the first use in this case. Too bad -- I've always kind of idolized them, and it's a bit painful to find out that they're mortal too!