Cyrus McCormick's reaping machine of 1831 (patented 1834), c1851. Artist: Anon
Cyrus McCormick's reaping machine of 1831 (patented 1834), c1851. This, the first widely adopted reaping machine, was shown at the Great Exhibition of 1851 in London where it was awarded a gold medal. Drawn by horses, the machine cut the corn and left it lying in swathes in the harvest field. The figure in the foreground is gathering the corn and tying it into sheaves which would be stood up in stooks, bottom right, to dry before being carried away and stored in stacks. Later models would include a mechanism to bind the corn in sheaves.
© Oxford Science Archive / Heritage-Images
March, 1412-1416. Artist: Paul Limbourg
March, 1412-1416. A farmer uses an ox-drawn wheeled plough on his field in the foreground, while in the distance, people are tending vines, keeping sheep and preparing to sow corn. Pisces and Aries, the signs of the zodiac for the month, are depicted in the sky above a castle in the background. From Les Tres Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, a book of hours produced for Jean, Duke of Berry by the Limbourg brothers. It is regarded as one of the finest examples of European manuscript illumination. From the Musee Condee, Chantilly, France.
© Ann Ronan Picture Library / Heritage-Images