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Ambiguous Rabbit or Duck Optical Illusion

There is a whole section of illusions that are ambiguous. This means that the image is open to more than one interpretation.

One of the oldest ambiguous figures is the "Duck or Rabbit" This illusion first appeared in the October 23rd issue of Fliegende Blatter (a German humor magazine) in 1892. source.

The interesting thing about this illusion is that it is frequently credited to Joseph Jastrow 1899. Joseph Jastrow is an American psychologist who was the first to note this image in his work. He used the duck-rabbit figure to make the point that perception is not just a product of the stimulus, but also of mental activity – that we see with the mind as well as the eye - source.

Jastrow's Cartoon (1899)

The truth though is that while Jastrow used his image in 1899 it had appeared in print at least twice before both times in 1892.

Jastrow's 1899 cartoon version was based on one originally published in Harper’s Weekly (November 19, 1892, p. 1114). The Harper's cartoon, in turn, was based on the original in Fliegende Blatter.

Below is a new version of this old favorite...

The photographer found this version during a visit to the Ripley's Believe It or Not! museum in Branson, Missouri.

What do you see a duck (looking left) or a rabbit (looking right). If you slide your mouse over the image the photo will rotate giving you a slightly differ perspective.

Flickr Artist: Dropped_Stitch

So what did you see in this image a duck or a rabbit? Which version above is most effective for you?

There are an endless variety of this type of illusion. What other ambiguous optical illusions have you seen?


Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh i can both, thats kool!

Tannis said...

It seems as though everyone I show this to sees it as a duck first; I saw the rabbit before the duck so is my brain backwards??

Shamerine said...

it looks more like a rabbit i mean look at the body

Devona said...

Did you go to any of the
Branson shows with magic?

Anonymous said...

I will not concur on it. I assume warm-hearted post. Especially the appellation attracted me to study the whole story.

Anonymous said...

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