Origami Heaven

A paperfolding paradise

The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell


Les Recreations Scientifiques by Gaston Tissandier
'Les Recreations Scientifiques' by Gaston Tissandier was first published in Paris by G. Masson in November 1880. A second edition was issued in 1881, a third in 1883, a fourth in 1884. It was widely translated into other languages.

Its chapters were in part based on articles in the column "physique sans appareils" (physics without apparatus) in 'La Nature', a magazine also founded and edited by Gaston Tissandier. Where I know the dates of such an earlier article they are given below.

The 1883 3rd edition included three effects which include elements of paperfolding. The first two (and possibly the third) also appeared in the 1st and 2nd Editions.

A full copy of the 3rd Edition of the work, published in 1883, can be viewed at https://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/bpt6k110526x/f5.image.

A copy of the 1884 4th Edition, which includes coloured plates, can be viewed at https://archive.org/details/lesrecreationssc00tiss/page/n9


Melting tin in a playing card

(Original article in La Nature Volume 15, p9, Autumn 1880)


Boiling water in a paper vase (a Junk Box)


The Jumping Bean


Smoke Rings from a Playing Card Cube

, published in also included a version of the Playing Card Cube with a small hole in the centre of the top card that could be used as an apparatus for creating smoke rings.

Original article in La Nature No 427 of 6th August 1881 (information from Michel Grand).