The genius of this automatic candle snuffer from 1841

The humble candle is a marvel of design. When you light one, the heat from the flame melts the wax around the wick, creating a small pool of liquid fuel. The wick draws the liquid wax upward through capillary action, allowing it to be vaporized and burned. As the candle burns, the wick even self-trims, maintaining the perfect flame size.

To make a candle even more awe-inspiring, you can equip it with one of these 180-year-old candle extinguishers, a clever contraption consisting of a sleeve with two spring-loaded shells on either end. By sliding the extinguisher onto the candle, you can set the desired burn time. Once the candle melts down to that point, the shells snap shut, extinguishing the flame in a surprisingly low-tech yet effective way.

For those who prefer a modern candle snuffer that is ugly and battery powered, you can buy one here!

Previously: Need emergency breathable air? Light an oxygen candle, but beware, it`s hot!