A Professor Filling & Explaining to an Audience, the Nature of a Baloon [sic].


Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

Data Source

National Air and Space Museum

Restrictions & Rights

Do not reproduce without permission from the Smithsonian Institution, National Air and Space Museum

Credit Line

Gift of the Norfolk Charitable Trust


Print, Etching on Paper, Colored


  • Mat: 30.5 × 25.4cm (10 × 12 in.)
  • Engraving: 11.3 × 16.2cm (4 7/16 × 6 3/8 in.)
  • Note Page: 8.3 × 14.3cm (3 1/4 × 5 5/8 in.)


January 20, 1784

Physical Description

  • Colored etching of a professor standing on a platform in front of an audience, gesturing towards a small gas balloon. Coloring done in shades of red, blue, and white. Handwritten note page in the mat identifies the scene as 'Professor Argand demonstrating before George III at Windsor in 1783. (Nov 26).'
  • Aimé Argand (1750-1803) was a friend of the Montgolfier brothers, gave chemical lectures, invented the argand lamp, and operated a distillery with his brother. He played a key role in connecting ballooning to serious research in natural philosophy. Argand arrived in London in October 1783 and was introduced to the King and Queen. On November 25, 1783 he inflated a small gas balloon at Windsor Castle, which the King released to the delight of his family.
  • 'Pubd. as the Act directs Jan. 20th 1784, J. Basire, No. 16 St. John's Lane Clerkenwell.'


ART-Prints, Original

Inventory Number


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