Devices to deceive the senses.


A Magneto- or electric machine to cure ill-health.

Patent medicines served as a form of therapeutic technology in the 19th century.

This period of inventions.

Etymology of device:

ORIGIN Middle English : from Old French devis, based on Latin divis- ‘divided,’ from the verb dividere.

The original sense was [desire or intention,] found now only in leave a person to his or her own devices (which has become associated with sense of scheme, schematic, plan, trick, or intentional action).

Meaning today:

a contrivance, some tool used to achieve a specified task -- a particular mechanical or automated apparatus --hence a thing divided in to parts.

For example: an explosive device or bomb (detonator, + wires, + explosives).

Many devices are composed of related tools and thus are complex in their design and operation.

Related word:

Devise, which is a verb. meaning to plan or invent (a complex procedure, system, or mechanism) by careful thought.

• In legal terms to create a bequest; leave property to someone in a will.

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