TALBOT, WILLIAM HENRY Fox, celebrated in connection with photography, was the son of William D. Talbot of Locock Abbey, Wilts, and was b. in 1800. He was educa ted at Harrow, and afterward at Trinity college, Cambridge, where he took his degree with honors, and obtained the junior chancellor's medal in 1821. In the first parliament summoned after the passing of the reform bill, Talbot sat for Chippenham; but scientific investigation being more to his taste, he gave up politics, and devoted himself to the problem of fixing shadows, ignorant at the time of what had been effected in this department by Wedgwood and Davy. Step by step he discovered for himself a method of obtaining and fixing sun-pictures, and on the dissemination of a report as to Daguerre's successes in the same field, secured his just rights by publishing a paper (Phil. Mag., _Mar., 1839); in which the successive steps of his investigation and their result were detailed. See PHOTOGRAPHY. This process, by which a negative (q.v.) was primarily
obtained, was subsequently improved by his invention (patent dated Feb. 8, 1841) of the calotype (q.v.) process. Soon afterward he obtained fresh patents, for an "instan taneous process" (which seems to have well deserved the name, as by it a legible picture was obtained of a printed bill fastened to the rim of a wheel revolving 200 times per second), a mode of " photographic engraving," and a " polyglyptic process." A later invention of his, patented in 1858, was called by him photoglyphic engraving; see the art. PHOTOGRAPHIC ENGRAVING. In 1842, Talbot obtained the medal of the royal soci ety for his previous discoveries. Latterly he devoted himself to the study of general physics, and to philological and miscellaneous researches. He died Sept. 17, 1877. Among his works are Hermes, or Classical and Antiquarian Researches; Legendary Tales; _Illustrations of the Antiquity of the Book of Genesis; and a work ou English Etymologies.