Phonautograph

An apparatus for registering the vibrations of a stylus, which is mounted on a diaphragm and is acted on by sound waves.

It is virtually a resonating chamber, over one of whose ends a parchment diaphragm is stretched. To the centre of the parchment a needle or stylus is attached. A cylinder covered with soot is rotated in contact with the point of the stylus. As the chamber is spoken into the diaphragm and stylus vibrate and the vibrations are marked on the cylinder. It is of some electric interest in connection with telephony.