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A rheoscope is an instrument for detecting or measuring currents, such as fluid currents or electric currents. The word rheoscope as a detector of electrical currents was coined by Sir Charles Wheatstone about 1840 but is no longer used to describe electrical instruments. The word makeup is similar to that of rheostat (also coined by Wheatstone) which was a device used to adjust the current in a circuit. Rheostat is a historical term for a variable resistance, though unlike rheoscope may still be encountered.[1][2]


  • Stein, Jess, ed. (1980). The Random House college dictionary. Random House. p. 1132. ISBN 0-394-43600-8. 
  1. ^ Brian Bowers (ed.), Sir Charles Wheatstone FRS: 1802-1875, IET, 2001 ISBN 0-85296-103-0 pp.104-105
  2. ^ ῥέος, ἱστάναι. Liddell, Henry George; Scott, Robert; A Greek–English Lexicon at the Perseus Project.