In 1654, Otto Guericke, while demonstrating his new "vacuum pump" and "vacuum bulb", and its remarkable properties, was rebuffed by Prince of Auerberg, who laughed at Guericke’s statement that: if a man should place his mouth over an evacuated receiver, he would ‘breath out his last breath’ at the same time!
- “In regard to these [vacuum] experiments, if a man should breath into the aforementioned receiver [bulb C, shown above], he would breath out his life at the same time.”
- — Otto Guericke (1654), ‘Comment to Prince of Auerberg’, Imperial Diet convention, Regensburg; in The New Magdeburg Experiments on the Vacuum (pg. 169)
Guericke, in reaction to this sharp remark, built a strong wooden frame, to which he affixed a piston and cylinder, with the piston head, in the top position of the cylinder, attached to a rope and pulley, which he gave to 20 or 30 strong men, telling them to hold on tight, after which, he instructed a young boy, to come to the piston and cylinder, and to attach his vacuum bulb, and to turn the connecting valve "x", so to "release the vacuum", after which the 20 to 30 men were jerked upwards into the air, which therein, evidenced "proof" to the prince, that indeed vacuums have the power to "take the last breath" out of a human!
The following are quotes:
- “That every body, whether solid or fluid, is augmented in all its dimensions [volume] by any increase of its sensible heat, was long ago fully established as a physical axiom, or universal proposition, by the celebrated Boerhaave.”
- Volume – Hmolpedia 2020.