What is a zoetrope and how does it work?
A zoetrope is a cylinder with vertical slits down the sides. The inside of the cylinder displays a band with a set of sequenced images. When the cylinder spins, the user can see the pictures inside as they look through the slits, which prevent the images from blurring together. Combined with the rapid succession of images, the illusion of motion in a continuous loop is created.
As with other motion simulation inventions, the illusions created by the zoetrope rely on the human retina retaining an image for roughly a tenth of a second. If a new image appears in that time, the brain merges them and the sequence appears continuous.