« PredošláPokračovať »
HIGH-PRESSURE ENGINE. the most sceptical may at length"admit, that it may truly and clearly describe an effect easily produced by a well-known mechanical agent. "I can make," says the marquess in the sixth problem of this summary,
one pound raise an hundred as high as the one pound falls; and the one pound being taken off, the hundred and twelve pounds shall again descend, performing the entire effect of an hundred weight ;--that is, I have that force which nothing less than one hundred and twelve pounds can have in any other way.” And he himself, as if aware of its apparent difficulty, calls it “an incredible effect till seen, but true as strange.” It may be borne in remembrance, that he is describing some of the effects of steam; and by these the riddle, as we have before stated, can easily be explained: the solution shows us, that the noble inventor may have been describing a high-pressure steam-engine, whose piston, weighing a pound, and attached to one end of a lever, raises one hundred and twelve pounds placed at the other extremity.
From this passage there is so strong ground for the opinion, that he was acquainted with some mode of elevating a piston by steam, that we should hesitate to say, that Lord Worcester, in his“ scantlings,” described any other than a highpressure lever engine; and this is still further corroborated by the same interesting manuscript record, where this extraordinary man announces another contrivance, which could only be practicable with a machine in this form, and which may almost rival, in its importance to mankind, the invention of the steam-engine itself.—" By it,” says the noble author, “ I can make a vessel, of as reat burden as the river can bear, to go against
the stream, which the more rapid it is, the faster it shall advance, and the moveable part that works it, may be by one man still guided to take advantage of the stream, and yet to steer the boat to any point; and this engine is applicable to any vessel or boat whatsoever, without being therefore made on purpose, and worketh these effects,mit roweth, it draweth, it driveth, (if need be,) to pass London Bridge against the stream at low water, and a boat laying at anchor, the engine may be used for loading or unloading.". Thus this master spirit enumerates effects, which have been generally considered as first produced in our times by the application of steam power to navigation. It now in every quarter of the globe draweth, roweth, and driveth, magnificent vessels; but it yet remains to supersede by its use the labour of men in loading and unloading ships of their cargo, as suggested by Lord Worcester.
In illustr (for some particular purpose which is now unknown) of the powers of this “water-commanding engine,” its inventor printed what he entitled, says Walpole,“Anexact and true definition of the most stupenduous water-commanding machine, invented by the right honourable and deservedly to be praised and admired, Edward Somerset, Lord Marquess of Worcester."* This
# « Most GRACIOUS SOVEREIGN.
“The same individual definition of my water work, which I formerly presumed to put into your royal hands, I again ad
I venture to present to your majesty; praying your belief of it, as your majesty shall find it true, by comparing it the real effect, which, if found punctually agreeing, vouchsafe not then to be apt hereafter to lend a believing eare to such persons, as malice causeth to detract from, or ignorance to slight what shall (though never so seemingly strange) be averred by
is a statement of the uses of his invention, and forms a thin quarto of twenty-two pages. In the library of the British Museum is preserved a large sheet, (without a date, and printed on one side only,) which appears to have been circulated by the marquess, and also to have been presented to King Charles.
“A stupenduous water-commanding engine, houndless for height and quantity, requiring no me, who will never be convinced of a falsehood in word or deed towards your sacred majesty; before whom I shall ever speak, as in the presence of Almighty God, whose vicegerent on earth I deem you: and to your majesty's transcendent judgement I submit all, and will presume to subscribe myself,
Sir, Your sacred majesties faithfully, devoted, and passionately affected, useful, if cherished, subject and servant,
“ WORCESTER." " A stupenduous Water-commanding Engine, boundless for height or quantity, requiring no external, nor even additional help, or force to be set or continued in motion, but what intrin. secally is afforded from its own operation, nor yet the twenttieth part thereof; and the Engine consisteth of the following particulars in
“A perfect counterpoise for what quantity soever of water.
“A perfect countervail for what height soever it is to be brought unto.
"Å primum mobile commanding both height and quantity Tegulatorwise.
"A vicegerent or countervail supplying the place, and performing the full force of a man, wind, beast, or mill. "A helm'or stern, with bitt and reins, wherewith any
childe may guide, order, and control the whole operation.
A particular magazine for water, according to the intended quantity or height of water.
“ An aquaduct, capable of any intended quantity or height of water.
"A place for the original fountain or even river to run into, and naturally of its own accord incorporate itself with the rising water, and at the very bottom of the said aquaduct, though never so big or high. By Divine Providence and heavenly inspiration, this is my stupenduous Water-commanding Engine, boundless for height and quantity.
59 external, or even additional, help or force to be set, or even continued in motion, but what intrinsically is afforded from its own operation, nor yet the twentieth part thereof; and the engine consisteth 'in the following particulars :-a perfect counterpoise' for what quantity soever of water; a perfect countervail for what height soever it is to be brought unto; a primum mobile, commanding both height and quantity, regulatorwise ; a vicegerent, or counterrail, supplying the place, and performing the full force of man, wind, beast, or mill. A helm, or stern, with bit and reins, wherewith any child may guide, order, and control the whole operation. A particular magazine for water, according to the intended quantity or height of water. An aqueduct capable of any intended quantity or height of water. A place for the original fountain or river to run into, anil naturally, of its own accord, incorporate itself with the rising water, and at the very bottom of the aqueduct, though never so big or high."
Whoesoever is master of weight, is master of force,
ments are easie,
Judge of it by th' effects; then give your doom. To God alone be all praise, honour, and glory, for ever and ever. AMEN.
CONSTRUCTION OF ENGINE. Every particular in this description illustrates those given in the “ Century.” The elasticity of the steam can be made to balance any quantity of water ; it can perform what any other first mover can perform, and can be guided by a cock turned even by a child; the magazine of water follows as a matter of course ; and the place for the original fountain to run into may have been the reservoir in which part of his mechanism was placed, or from which, more probably, it was conducted into the machine. This also, evidently, was not accomplished by what he called suction; for he expressly observes, that it did not a ct on this principle.
The two attempts which have been made to design a machine from the descriptions in the * scautlings” and “definition," have proceeded on the opinion, that the water-commanding engine was constructed without a piston. An apparatus similar to the figure II, will nearly fulfil all the conditions of the description on this principle, without introducing parts which are universally considered to belong to later inventors. A boiler, X, is connected to two receivers, a, b, by a pipe, s; the steam is admitted or shut off by a cock, e, from each vessel alternately; and by a pipe, m,containing two valves opening outwards from each receiver, they are connected with the rising or eduction pipe, i; another pipe, n, u, connects the cistern with the receivers, and the cock at n interrupts the communication between the cistern and each receiver at pleasure ; hy a hole in each receiver, capable of being closed in an air-tight manner, the air may be expelled as it accumulates in either.
When steam is generated in the boiler,x, it flows through the pipe, s, and passing into the receiver,