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The World's First Selfie: A Self-Photograph from 1839

The World's First Selfie: A Self-Photograph from 1839

This 1839 self-photograph by Robert Cornelius from Philadelphia is believed to be the world's first ever selfie.

This 1839 self-photograph by amateur chemist and photography enthusiast Robert Cornelius (1809-1893) from Philadelphia is believed to be the world's first ever selfie - a photography craze that is taking the world by storm 175 years later.

Photo: Robert Cornelius/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

This daguerreotype (a pioneering and popular photographic process) was also the first to be taken in North America. He had set up his camera up at the back of his family store and captured the image by removing the lens cap, running into frame and holding the pose for a minute and then covering up the lens again. On the rear of the daguerreotype, Cornelius wrote, "The first light picture ever taken. 1839."

Cornelius took at least one more selfie, this was four years later showing him pouring the contents of a beaker and a bottle through a funnel into a another beaker. His face though is not clearly visible in the image.

first published:April 28, 2016, 11:29 IST