Thursday, 18 December 2008

The Antikythera Mechanism

The wonderfully mysterious Antikythera Mechanism was discovered in a shipwreck off the Greek coast in 1901.


Dated to about 100BC, the mechanism’s discovery completely changed our modern view of just how technological the ancient world was.

About the size of a shoebox, it’s a steampunk lover’s dream.

A sophisticated system of hand-cranked gears and cogs provides an accurate calendar and astronomical clock. It maps the relative positions of the sun, moon and planets (or at least the ones that were known in 100BC) and the stars.

It even keeps track of the dates of the Olympic Games.

A new working model of the mechanism has just been completed, incorporating all the very latest discoveries.

The longer it’s investigated, the more amazing things are discovered.

But of course the real question is:  when can I get one?