A bit of Steampunk history today! I was recently browsing the digital archives of the London Science Museum, one of the many wonderful places I had the great fortune to visit in my tour of Europe in 2008, and happened upon this very impressive Victorian Prosthetic Arm. This is real folks, not a Steampunk reinterpretation.
Made from steel and brass, this unusual prosthetic arm articulates in a number of ways. The elbow joint can be moved by releasing a spring, whereas the top joint of the wrist allows a degree of rotation and an up-and-down motion. The fingers can also curl up and straighten out. The leather upper arm piece is used to fix the prosthesis to the remaining upper arm. The rather sinister appearance of the hand suggests the wearer may have disguised it with a glove. Among the most common causes of amputation throughout the 1800s were injuries received as a result of warfare.
Be sure to click the photo, or just click here to check out the digital archives where you’ll be able to see the prosthetic in full detail. And, while you’re there, do be sure to check out their entire digital archive.
You never know where the next inspiration will come from, and the Science Museum’s archives is a great place to get those creative juices flowing.