The A to Z Challenge – C for Chladni & Cymatics #atozchallenge

It’s time for the A to Z Challenge! Hello and welcome to my main blog. My name is Rose Anderson and I’m a novelist. Join me and nearly 2000 bloggers and authors as we blog the alphabet throughout the month of April. It’s not as easy as you might think. There’s a reason Q and Z are worth 10 points in Scrabble!

For me, this year’s alphabet will be about history and historical science– things that tickle my fancy or capture my imagination. I hope you will find them interesting too.

Keep the topic rolling! If you’ve enjoyed the today’s offering and have comments or questions, add them at the end of the post in the comment section. And…if you enjoy romances with unique twists, a good deal of steam, facts, and characters full of personality and depth, scroll down for a free chapter sampler. I love to make the impossible sound plausible. Suffice to say, I have an unusual mind.


Today’s Calliope’s Writing Tablet post is brought to you by the letter C ~ C for Chladni & Cymatics

German physicist and musician Ernst Chladni (1756-1827) was relatively famous for his work on vibration and sound. Enough so, it earned him the label Father of Acoustics. (Curious sidebar: He studied meteors as well which earned him the title the Father of Meteoritics. It makes me wonder if he had kids. lol)

Considered an important milestone in launching the science of acoustics more than 200 years later, his book Discoveries in the Theory of Sound catalogs a fairly amazing discovery made earlier by noted English polymath Robert Hooke Capture— that sound waves made patterns that were different from one another according to their frequency. You see, Hook had employed sand atop a glass plate to which a violin’s bow was applied. The vibration running over the glass made the grains of sand dance and ultimately form distinct patterns. This was the birth of Cymatics. From the Greek kŷma for wave, Cymatics is the study of sound and vibration made visible.

And it was entertaining!

Chladni went on a lecture circuit across Europe to demonstrate his findings on vibration. He dazzled the audiences with the patterns and to say they were captivated is an understatement. Even Napoleon and Josephine were enthralled. In fact Napoleon offered 3000 francs to anyone who could explain this phenomenon. This prize was awarded to French mathematician and philosopher Sophie Germain who worked it out mathematically. She became the first woman to win a prize from the Paris Academy of Sciences for this work.  Today the Academy awards the Prix Sophie Germain (Sophie Germain Prize) for mathematics in her name. 

chladnigram – the patterns of sound

Vibration patterns are remarkable. Our existence is filled with repeating patterns found everywhere from snowflakes to scales on snakes. It sure makes you wonder. Here’s a previous A to Z post I wrote on these patterns.

This observation didn’t just crop up in the last few hundred years. Cymatics can be traced to primitive peoples who used sand or seeds on tight drum heads to divine future events. As a drummer myself, I find it all quite fascinating.


A wealth of cymatic study

These cymatic experiments were performed by Swiss scientist, Dr. Hans Jenny in the 1960s. He uses different particles on the Chladni Plate such as sand, iron filings, etc, and all react to sound waves differently. Fascinating stuff.

The Sound of Sacred Geometry – Alexander Lauterwasser

Chladni Patterns of sound. Keep your fingers on the volume or your brain will explode. Just kidding. Seriously, I found some of the tones painful to listen to.

marshmallow_peepsSunday~ My Fun Day Sunday post
Monday ~ letter D!

Happy Spring Holidays, Everyone!



RB4U purpleFantastic authors & industry representatives all month long.

Romance Books ‘4’ Us

check out our promo services.
And…check out our April contest. We have prizes!


Attention Authors~  My Exquisite Quills blog hosts five fun and free b1e43-eqpicpromo opportunities a week. I’m delighted to say it’s a hot spot with great exposure. Come join in!


DianneVenetta_AIB-Logo_2015-250x250Join me on my satellite blog April 8th – 17th
Authors’ lives outside of the books we write are often as interesting as the worlds we create. One of the more unusual things my husband and I have done was lead wild foods programs for Chicago’s Field Museum. For this event I’ll be sharing my recipes. I hope you stop by. There are lots of prizes and you might have delicious ingredients waiting in your backyard. 🙂


Love Waits in Unexpected Places –
Scorching Samplings of Unusual Love Stories

Download your free chapter sampler today!



About ~RoseAnderson

Rose Anderson is an award-winning author and dilettante who loves great conversation and delights in discovering interesting things to weave into stories. Rose also writes under the pen name Madeline Archer.
This entry was posted in Past Posts - you'll never know what you'll find and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to The A to Z Challenge – C for Chladni & Cymatics #atozchallenge

  1. jelquinn says:

    Beautiful images of sound, Rose. Thanks for posting this.

  2. melissakeir says:

    We’d just finished studying sound and the kids loved seeing the waves! Great post!

  3. treknray says:

    Thanks for an amazing post. I am going to have to listen to the TED lectures. I just downloaded the app on my iPad.

    • Thanks, Ray. I’m glad you’re enjoying the A to Z posts. I have some very interesting posts this time around. To think sound waves take on the defined shape in nature is fascinating indeed. It makes me wonder if the first sound was all waves at once.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s