An Examination of the Mechanisms of Movement in Heron of Alexandria’s On Automaton-Making

  • Finlay McCourtEmail author
Part of the History of Mechanism and Machine Science book series (HMMS, volume 15)


In the first book of On Automaton-Making a number of mechanisms are described which move a ‘mobile-automaton’ around a performance space. These mechanisms are presented in the form of new translations from the original Greek. The feasibility of each mechanism is discussed, and other technical issues in each plan are considered along with those applicable to all. From this some conclusions as to which mechanisms had actually been constructed or witnessed by the author are made, and the theoretical nature of the remaining devices is considered. Additionally, a short introduction to the author Heron of Alexandria is given, along with an introduction to the text On Automaton-Making as a whole.


Circular Movement Reverse Movement Rectilinear Movement Return Movement Internal Screw Thread 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Netherlands 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Classics, School of HumanitiesUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK

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