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Cornelis Jacobszoon Drebbel
Alkmaar 1572 – Londen 1633

Drebbel Knowledge Centre

An internet meeting point for people with an interest in the life and works of Drebbel.


Cornelis Jacobszoon Drebbel "a Bold mind, a show-off to the World" 


The Edison of his time; Brilliant empiric researcher and innovator, Drebbels constructions and innovations cover in particular measurement- and control technology, pneumatics, optics, chemistry and hydraulics. With Staten General he registers several patents: a new invention to elevate fresh water in quantity, a perpetual watch that will run a hundred years and more without winding, improved the flues of chimneys.

Measurement- and control technology / pneumatics: Famous for his Perpetuum Mobile, builds and navigates with a submarine, develops torpedo’s and sea mines. Builds an incubator for eggs and a portable stove/oven with an optimal use of fuel, able to keep the heat on a constant temperature by means of a regulator / thermostat. Designs a solar energy system for London (perpetual fire), demonstrates airconditioning, let it rain, makes lightning and thunder ‘on command’, develops fountains. Involved in the draining of the moors around Cambridge (the Fens). Develops predecessors of the barometer and thermometer, the "Drebbeliaensch instrument", and harpsichords that play on solar energy.

Optics: Develops an automatic precision lens-grinding machine, builds improved telescopes, constructs the first microscope ('lunette de Dreubells'), camera obscura, laterna magica.

Chemistry: Develops an innovative way to improve and produce scarlet red dye, establishes a dye works in Stratford-at-Bow-on-Lea.
1604 Drebbel portret.jpg
 Probably makes oxygen for his submarine.

Hydraulics: Makes theater props, moving statues. Is involved in plans to build a new theater in London

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