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Glimpses inside Lyme homes in the 1880s

Once again, Sun Insurance documents, this time from October 1880 to June 1895, offer intriguing insights into the lives of some of those living in Lyme at the time. As well as giving the name and occupation, these records give the address and list those contents which are to be insured. There appear to be a surprising number of spinsters, and an even more surprising number of owners of "mathematical and philosophical instruments and apparatus." Apparently "philosophical" covered what would now be called "scientific", a term which was only just coming into use at the time. The whole term covered a very wide range of items, from clocks, watches, spectacles and thermometers through magic lanterns, barometers and basic telescopes to very complicated research instruments.

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