Antikythera Mechanism

antikythera mechanism

The Antikythera [an-ti-ki-theer-uhmechanism is an incredibly old mechanical calculator, often described as the first mechanical computer. It was discovered in 1901 in a shipwreck off the coast of Antikythera, Greece. The device was used to figure out the positions of stars in the sky. It was probably made in about 150-100 BC, and is now on display in the Bronze Collection of the National Archaeological Museum of Athens.

Its significance and complexity were not understood until decades after its discovery. The degree of mechanical sophistication is comparable to a 19th century Swiss clock. Technological artifacts of similar complexity and workmanship did not reappear until the 14th century, when mechanical astronomical clocks were built in Europe.


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