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This type of microtome was devised by Andrew Pritchard (1804-1882) to cut thin sections of wood. The date of the invention is uncertain, although research suggests that it pre-dates 1835. This microtome was designed to cut slices of wood. Attached to a piston screw, which moves the sample up and down, the piece of wood is cut in slithers by a double-handled knife. This is the first type of microtome made to be screwed to the edge of a table so it does not move during the cutting operation.

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Related Themes and Topics



Glossary: histology

The study of the structure of tissues by means of special staining techniques combined with light and electron microscopy.

Glossary: microscopy

The use of microscopes to study objects or samples. The three major types of microscopy are optical, electron and scanning probe microscopy.

Glossary: microtome

An instrument used to cut thin sections of biological material so that they can be examined under a microscope.