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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 13-04-04

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] 'Antikythera Wreck' exhibition

  • [01] 'Antikythera Wreck' exhibition

    AMNA--An exhibition entitled "The wreck of Antikythera - The ship, the treasures, the Mechanism", currently on show at the Archaeological Museum in Athens, will close on April 28 after a year-long run.

    The exhibition, which opened on April 5 last year, is the first time that all the findings from the Antikythera wreck, dated between 60-50 BC, are displayed together, while some of the items had never been displayed before.

    Sometime before Easter 1900, Elias Stadiatis, a Greek sponge diver, discovered the wreck of an ancient cargo ship off Antikythera Island at a depth of 42 m (138 ft). Sponge divers retrieved several statues and other artifacts from the site. The Mechanism itself was discovered on May 17, 1901, when archaeologist Valerios Stais noticed that a piece of rock recovered from the site had a gear wheel embedded in it. Examination revealed that the "rock" was in fact a heavily encrusted and corroded mechanism that had survived the shipwreck in three main parts and dozens of smaller fragments. The device itself was surprisingly thin, about 33 cm (13 in) high, 17 cm (6.7 in) wide, and 9 cm (3.5 in) thick, made of bronze and originally mounted in a wooden frame. It was inscribed with a text of over 2,000 characters, many of which have only just recently been deciphered.amna

    The Antikythera Mechanism is believed to be an ancient mechanical calculator (also described as a "mechanical computer") designed to calculate astronomical positions. It was discovered in the Antikythera wreck off the Greek island of Antikythera, between Kythera and Crete, and has been dated to about 150-100 BC. Technological artifacts of similar complexity appeared a thousand years later.


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