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Dějiny věd a techniky, No. 3, Vol. XXXVIII (2005)


Ladislav Jangl

Changes of Linear Measures in the Czech Mining and their Reasons

(Změny délkových měr v českém hornictví a jejich příčiny)

Linear measures were relevant for measuring distances in mines in the past because relations of property rights were very sensitive. Mining entrepreneurs were willing to invest in mining only when protection of their investment was guaranteed. Representatives of the state and deputies of landed property authorities provided this protection. Changes in the linear measures and consequently also in loans could be made only when mines were closed or their activities interrupted or on occasions when they were newly opened.

This was the case in the Jihlava and Havlíčkův Brod districts, where mining declined in the 13th and 14th centuries. The decline in the district of Kutná Hora followed at the beginning of the 15th century, and then the old measure, “látro” (from the German term “Lachter”) could be partly replaced by “loket” (ell), “dumploch” or partially by new type of “látro.” At the beginning of the 16th century, when previous activities at the so-called “old Bohemian mines” were already economically dying, intensive mining activity developed in the northwest Bohemia. New entrepreneurs brought the “Freiberg látro,” which lasted until the 19th century, when the mining activities of the ore mines nearly ceased —except for the state uranium mines. Fields of mines measured under the Freiberg “látro” disappeared together with it. The few newly opened mines got already great measures of mines. The loss of continuity happened also in Příbram, where the state took mining property into its ownership gradually from the second half of the 18th to the end of the 19th centuries. Hungarian measures, rather usual here, were then substituted without problems by the Vienna “sáh” (six feet), and later by the meter. A new line of the mining activities, coal mining, was not burdened by any previous linear units. Loans of the large mining measures defined at first with the help of Vienna “sáh” and then with the help of meter were desirable for this purpose.


Martin Jedlička

First Patents of the Magnetically Levitated Trains

(První patenty magneticky levitovaných vlaků)

The paper deals with the first projects of magnetically levitated trains. It begins with a short introduction to the history and then describes in detail two patents from the beginning of the 20th century. Emil Bachelet and A. C. Albertson both were probably the first to create the first prototype of levitated train with the use of two basic principles – electromagnetic and electrodynamic. Emil Bachelet succeeded to make a working model that he later demonstrated both in the U. S. A. and in London before the World War I. Unfortunately the war interrupted the development of the project and the effort to gain financial support for it. After the war Bachelet was not able to continue his previous research, and so the model was all that was left from his work.


Zdeněk Koleška

Representation of Zoology and Entomology at Congresses of Czech Naturalists and Physicians in Prague

(Zastoupení vědních oborů zoologie a entomologie na sjezdech českých přírodovědců a lékařů v Praze)

The study analyses the participation of zoologists and entomologists at five scientific congresses of Czech naturalists and physicians organized in the Austrian Monarchy prior to the World War I. At congresses arranged in 1880, 1882, 1901, 1908, and 1914, a number of original and entomological statements, published by prominent scholars of professor Dr. Antonín Frič and later by young zoological workers of the Vejdovský’s and Mrázek’s zoological school, were presented in special biological sections.

After 1918, in the independent Czechoslovak Republic, the tradition of pre-war congresses was followed by the sixth and final Congress of Czechoslovak naturalists, physicians, and engineers convened in 1928, which in the anniversary year presented Czechoslovak scientific progress for the 10-year period since the founding of the republic. This congress also brought new scientific knowledge of Czech biologists, zoologists, and entomologists in the fields of zoology and entomology.

© M. Barvík 2005