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The History of Mirrors

            "Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who's the fairest of them all?" A mirror acts as a looking-glass imitating every image precisely. Starting in 6000 BC, people began using anything from water collected in a vessel, to a polished or volcanic rock, to achieve any reflection. So what is this, "mirror"? Defined by Webster's dictionary as "a looking-glass or a speculum; any glass or polished substance that forms images by the reflection of rays of light." It allows us to clearly visualize, what our blind spots have limited from us, but it also promotes self-criticism and some superstitions.
             Looking in water, and then onto stone, even early on, people were always searching for any reflection. Some of the earliest man made mirrors have been found in Turkey dating back about 6000 years, made from polished stone and black volcanic glass obsidian. Others, such as ancient Mesopotamian's, produced polished metal mirrors and some made from polished stone. Using polished copper to produce mirrors, Ancient Egyptians also embellished the round face of the mirror with ornamentation. However, in China mirrors began to be made from metal alloys, a mixture of tin and copper called speculum metal that could be highly polished to make a reflective surface as well as mirrors made of polished bronze.
             Constantly, people look for any reflection they can find, whether it was from a window, glass door or sunglasses, just to admire the precise duplication of themselves. Not only do mirrors serve a purpose as a decorative piece mounted on our wall, but they are also used for rear-view and side mirrors in cars, performing magic tricks, reflecting light like in a disco ball and in science for equipment such as telescopes and microscopes.
             Although a mirror captures a perfect picture, it is not a framed picture. A mirror contains much more depth and movement than a still picture. While a picture does capture a paused moment precisely, it doesn't hold the movement.

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