The Book Wheel - How nerds of yore avoided fixed distance reading

In another thread (Hello! I’m Tengguoqi.I’m from china) we were discussing using eisles and shelves to promote better reading posture. My husband looked over my shoulder and said he’d recently seen some antique library standing desk that held multiple books at that angle and could be rotated. Took a little digging, they’re called “book carousel” or “book wheel” or “reading wheel”. Modern sources reflecting on these basically consider it either a book display or an antique method of application switching, but the reading angle is clearly an important component, and I wonder if they were able to avoid fixed-distance staring by moving the carousel a bit while reading.

Several examples:

A modern re-creation:


I wonder if a simple counterbalanced easel would help with the fixed distance…

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