The Archimedes Dial, featured in the final installment of the Indiana Jones franchise, may not allow time travel, but its roots can be traced back to a real-life ancient wonder called the Antikythera Mechanism. Discovered more than a century ago by divers off the Greek island of the same name, the Antikythera Mechanism is an incredibly complex instrument that dates back over 2,000 years.
Considered one of the most important archaeological finds of all time, the Antikythera Mechanism is believed to be an early astronomical calculator. For ancient Greeks, it was an unimaginable piece of contraption. Filled with intricate bronze gears, the mechanism remained shrouded in mystery until experts began to unravel its secrets.
Despite its age, the mechanism was capable of accurately tracking celestial bodies. Research has revealed that it was likely used as a navigational aid, a way of charting courses across the seas.
But how did the ancient Greeks, known for their love of culture and art, develop such a complex instrument? That remains a question that continues to baffle researchers. Fortunately, the Antikythera Mechanism was not alone when it was discovered. In addition to the instrument, archaeologists also found coins, jewelry, pottery, and statue fragments.
In recent years, researchers uncovered the skeleton of one of the ship’s crew members. It is believed that the vessel was en route from Asia Minor to Rome when it sank, possibly carrying the valuables of a woman who was to be wed.
The Antikythera Mechanism is a testament to the technological ingenuity of ancient Greece. The complex instrument continues to fascinate scientists and historians alike, inspiring the creation of the Archimedes Dial and capturing the imagination of people around the world.