Visual entertainment has always fascinated people, in todays digital era as well as in the 18th century when candles and kerosene lamps lighted the world!

There are many different types of early optical toys and I have tried to divide those I have into categories, pre-cinema, peep-shows, etc.

You will also find some books with movable parts or other extra functions. These do normally fall into the category of optical toys when auctioned at the major auction houses.

Dont miss the Reference Litterature list at the end of this page!
A large coin operated stereoscope
With pictures of nude Ladies!
A Ziegler Deluxe Stereographoscope
A rare model
A rare Lewis Deluxe Stereoscope
Unusal and complex design!
A Large Decorated French Stereographoscope
A real beauty!
A Brewster Type By The London Stereoscopic Company
Unusal Brass Mechanism for mirror.
A beatiful decorated french stereographoscope.
With decorations in silver!
A stereographoscope by the famous Negretti&Zambra firm.
After the Roswell Patent.
A very large model by Carlo Ponti
The largest stereographoscope ever made?
A ca 1910 Le Taxiphote sterescope
A central piece in any stereo collection.
A 1885 chromed pedestal stereoscope.
A seldom seen model by Schneck.
Smiht Beck&Beck New Acromathic Stereoscope. London 1860s
The classic Beck model
Pedestal Stereoscope by Bloch. Geneva 1860.
A very rare custom made stereoscope
Brewster Type Pedestal Stereoscope. London 1860s.
A pedestal stereoscope, all in mahogany, locking knobs in brass, etc.
Two storage boxes for stereoviews. Germany ca 1880.
A pair of bookshaped storageboxes. In decorated cloth with text on spine.
Praxinoscope ER Paris 1879
A charming pre-cinema optical device. With set of 12 handcolored strips. One of the most collectable early pre cinema toys.
Praxinoscope Theater ER Paris 1879
A More complex variant of the above Praxinoscope.
A 1902 french Shadow Theatre
With built in musical box!
A mechanical Shadow Theatre
A charming mechanical early cinema toy!
A large mahogany and brass Magic Lantern
English ca 1895
A rare EP combined Cinemathograph & Magic Lantern
English ca 1895
A G Carette Cinemathograph
Complete set in Box.
A early french Cinematographe
A charming early cinema toy!
Polyorama Panoptique
French ca 1850 optical toy.
Peep Egg. Thames Thunnel London 1843.
A charming example of these rare peep eggs. Shows 3 different scenes. This one bears the inscription "Bought In The Thames Thunnel"
Panorama Panoptique Views. Paris ca 1830.
Set of 6 views. Handcolored and transparent, for use in the Panorama Panoptique.
Peep Show Copenhagen 1888
A peep show showing the Great Industrial Exhibition in Copenhagen 1888.
A Spooner Protean View - The Eddystone Lighthouse. Ca 1830.
A very interesting form of transforming views
Makalösa Bilderboken. Oscar Lamm Sth. 1873
"The Incredible Picturebook" A set of 12 colored plates, each with a flapsection that makes the picture turn into another motive.
Gubben Med Skåpet. 1877
A tale about a travelling Peep Show and its pictures!
Puss In Boots 1860
A large pop up scene illustrating the tale
Little Red Riding Hood 1860
A large pop up scene illustrating the tale
Transparanta Förvandlingstaflor. O Lamm Sth 1860s
A fantastic set of 6 large transparent handcolored plates. When hold to light the motives changes. Motives from wellknown childrens storys - Cinderella, etc.
Stort Menageri. Lamm Sth 1883
A Swedish adaption of the famous german original - Grosse Mennageri.
6 plates with movable / 3 dimensional scenes, all related to animals.
Spectroscopia, or Surprising Spectral Illusions Showing Ghosts Everywhere. J.G Gregory. N.Y 1864
First american ed of this charming book.! Wonderful optical illusions - stare at a green ghost for 20 sec, turn your view towards a white surface and theres a red ghost flying in the air before you!
A large Lithophane on its original stand.
Unusally large example on Gothic style stand.
A Cuniniscope London
A rare viewing device for CDVs.
Large German Kaleidoscope. Ca 1870.
Unusal large pedestal model.
Les Anamorphoses. Julien Editur. Paris 1852.
Anamorphical views
A mahogany Zograscope. London 1795.
A very mystical device!
Stereoscopes. The First Hundred Years,
Paul Wing. Transition Publ. 1996
The History Of Movie Photography
Brian Coe. Eastview Editions. 1981
Optical Amusements.........
Richard Balzer. 1987
The Ten Year Book
Magic Lantern Soc. 1986
Magic Lanterns
Derek Greenacre Shire Pucl. 1986
Optical Toys
Basil Harley. Shire Pucl. 1988
The True History Of Peppers Ghost
Repr of 1890 ed. 1996
Dr Paris Thaumatrope or Wonder Turner
J Barnes. 1995
G. Melies. Father Of Film Fantasy
MOMI. 1993
The Lantern Image. Iconography 1420-1880
Suppl 1. Magic Lantern Soc. 1997
The Lantern Image. Iconography 1420-1880
Magic Lantern Soc. 1993
Encyclopaedia Of The Magic Lantern
Magic Lantern Soc. 2001
Ralph Hyde. Trefoil Publ. 1988.
Peppshows. A Visual History.
Richard Balzer. 1998
Transparente Steine und Optische Kästen.
Museum Schloss. 2003
Theodore Browns Magic Pictures.
Stephen Herbert. The Projection Box. 1997
Magie Lumineuse.
Jac Remisse. Balland 1979
Trough Magic Glasses
Buckley, A.B. London: Edward Stanford, 1890
Optisches Spielzug, oder Wie Die Bilder Laufern Lernten.
George Füsslin Verlag. 1993
Der Guckkasten.
George Füsslin Verlag. 1995
George Füsslin Verlag. 1997
George Füsslin Verlag. 1999