# Allan Bromley (historian) - Antikythera Mechanism

Antikythera Mechanism

Bromley, together with Sydney clockmaker Frank Percival, built a partial reconstruction of the Antikythera mechanism, one of the oldest (surviving) geared mechanisms known.

Professor Bromley took up the mystery of the computer where Price left off. He tested Price's theory of how the device worked by building a model of the main gear train with Meccano parts. He found that the mechanism was unworkable.
Professor Bromley says that he had an advantage that Professor Price did not have - he worked on the research in very close association with Mr Percival, a retired engineer and expert clock-maker in his spare time. Professor Price did not work closely with a mechanical-minded person.
The Bromley-Percival solution was to improve the mechanics of the device by altering the function of the handle which turned the gears so that one complete turn could represent one day, the most obvious of all astronomical phenomena.
Professor Bromley used the same arrangement of parts as Professor Price but had to conjecture that there were other gears and, as if it were meant to be, there was a gap in the mechanism in just the place where he wanted to put them
Another major discovery by professor Bromley concerned one whole train of gearing which had puzzled professor Price who could find no purpose for it. Professor Price guessed that it might have operated a four-year cycle on the device. Price had an assistant count the number of teeth on this gear train and was told it had 15 and 63 respectively. His response, possibly with modern gearing too much in mind, was to say that these numbers were too difficult to work with and must have actually been 16 and 64.
Professor Bromley decided he would see what happen if he worked with the original estimate of 15 and 63 gear teeth. If those were correct figures, he realised, the cycle of this gear train would have been 4 1/2 years. Four time 4 1/2 years is 18 and this happens to be the cycle of eclipses - which repeat every 18 years.
With this gearing the model worked. As the handle is turned, the pointer moves into a new square for each new moon - that is, one square shown on one of the dials of the device represents one month. In 223 months, or 18 years, one can see the complete cycle. —The University of Sydney News, 29 March 1988, p.39

### Other articles related to "antikythera mechanism, mechanism, mechanisms":

Antikythera Mechanism - Investigations and Reconstructions - Tony Freeth and Alexander Jones's Additions
... World (ISAW) entitled The Cosmos in the Antikythera Mechanism they suggest that it is quite likely that the mechanism included gearing and indicators for the planets as well as possibly indicating solar anomalies ... Investigations reveal that their simulated mechanism is not particularly accurate, the Mars pointer being up to 38° out at times ... In short, the Antikythera Mechanism was a machine designed to predict celestial phenomena according to the sophisticated astronomical theories current in its day, the sole witness to a ...
Allan Bromley (historian) - Antikythera Mechanism
... clockmaker Frank Percival, built a partial reconstruction of the Antikythera mechanism, one of the oldest (surviving) geared mechanisms known ... He found that the mechanism was unworkable ... as if it were meant to be, there was a gap in the mechanism in just the place where he wanted to put them Another major discovery by professor Bromley concerned ...
Axial Precession - Hipparchus' Discovery
... Hipparchus' mathematical signatures in the Antikythera Mechanism, an ancient astronomical computer of the 2nd century BC ... The mechanism is based on a solar year, the Metonic Cycle, which is the period the Moon reappears in the same star in the sky with the same phase (full Moon appears at the same position in the ... The study of the Antikythera Mechanism proves that the ancients have been using very accurate calendars based on all the aspects of solar and lunar motion in the sky ...
Platsis Symposium - Symposium Topics
... "Newest Discoveries on the Antikythera Mechanism" by Prof ... "The Antikythera Mechanism Decoding an Ancient Greek Mystery" by Dr ... Antony Freeth, the Antikythera Mechanism Research Project, London, UK ...

### Famous quotes containing the word mechanism:

The two elements the traveler first captures in the big city are extrahuman architecture and furious rhythm. Geometry and anguish. At first glance, the rhythm may be confused with gaiety, but when you look more closely at the mechanism of social life and the painful slavery of both men and machines, you see that it is nothing but a kind of typical, empty anguish that makes even crime and gangs forgivable means of escape.
Federico García Lorca (1898–1936)