Abstract: Early Years

1846

Carl Zeiss founds a workshop for precision mechanics and optics in Jena.

1847

Production of microscopes

1866

Start of collaboration between Ernst Abbe and Carl Zeiss

1872

Abbe’s theory of image formation in the microscope leads to fundamentally improved microscopes. This theory and the “sine condition” that bears Abbe’s name form the basis of all high-performance optics.

1884

Founding of the subsequent Jenaer Glaswerks Schott & Genossen (today: SCHOTT AG) by Otto Schott, Ernst Abbe, Carl Zeiss and Roderich Zeiss

1889

Founding of the Carl Zeiss Foundation by Ernst Abbe.

1891

Ernst Abbe makes the Carl Zeiss Foundation the sole owner of the Zeiss factory

1900

Already of considerable economic importance, in the first half of the 20th century Carl Zeiss develops into a leading optics enterprise with activities all over the world.