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camera obscura

[ob-skyoo r-uh] /ɒbˈskyʊər ə/
a darkened boxlike device in which images of external objects, received through an aperture, as with a convex lens, are exhibited in their natural colors on a surface arranged to receive them: used for sketching, exhibition purposes, etc.
Origin of camera obscura
1660-70; < New Latin: dark chamber; see camera1, obscure Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for camera obscura
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In a camera obscura, the butcher's cart, and the figure of one of our own family amuse us.

    Nature Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • He also gives descriptions of the camera obscura and of the burning-glass.

    Stories of Invention Edward E. Hale
  • The principles of its construction are the same with those of the camera obscura.

  • He saw them all as on the ever-changing field of a camera obscura.

    Phantastes George MacDonald
  • He did not reply, but quietly led me into his camera obscura that I might see for myself.

    The Darrow Enigma Melvin L. Severy
  • The same principle enters into the arrangement of the camera obscura.

    Eveline Mandeville

    Alvin Addison
  • He is now forming a menagerie, and also has a collection of fossils and minerals from the neighbourhood, with a camera obscura.

    Canada and the Canadians Sir Richard Henry Bonnycastle
  • Men and women and animals seen at the numbered white stations in the sand, were but fantastic figures in a camera obscura.

    It Happened in Egypt C. N. Williamson
  • In fact, Cooper could never comprehend how his head was like a camera obscura!

British Dictionary definitions for camera obscura

camera obscura

a darkened chamber or small building in which images of outside objects are projected onto a flat surface by a convex lens in an aperture Sometimes shortened to camera
Word Origin
New Latin: dark chamber
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for camera obscura

1725, "a darkened room;" c.1730, "a device for project pictures;" see camera.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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