In her book Decoding the Heavens, Jo Marchant tells the story of an ancient Greek artefact called the Antikythera mechanism. It was discovered. Roman Aqueducts and Water Supply by A. Trevor Hodge The Riddle of the Labyrinth by Margalit Fox Decoding the Heavens by Jo Marchant A LM IA Ceramic. We all know about the ancient Greeks’ abilities in art and philosophy, but, as this enlightening book tells us, they also made the world’s first.

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Is it the crypt of Seti I in the Valley of the Kings, whose grandeur dwarfs the modest resting place of Tutankhamen? The importance of translations of knowledge through the ages and the different stages of technology in the world marcgant ancient times was quite frustrating to read.

Marchant approaches the mystery of the mechanism in a narrative that begins with the discovery of the Antikythera wreck in and includes a primer on the development of scuba gear in the 19th century. It shows up in most books about ancient technology, alongside heacens of hhe mechanical singing birds of Crete and the possibility that the Nazca of Peru invented the first passenger balloons.

But overall a very intriguing book that makes me wonder yet again what else there is yet to be discovered, if ever discovered the saddest possibility. The bronze fragments of an ancient Greek device have puzzled scholars for more than a century after they were recovered from the bottom mrchant the Mediterranean Sea, where they had lain since about 80 BC.

The book describes how the work of severa This nonfiction work reads like a mystery story.

Jo Marchant: Decoding the Heavens video | Kevin Houston

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Decoding the Heavens by Jo Marchant is the kind of book that would meet the math and science reading requirement in our homeschool high school.

Cousteau’s team, diving the wreck indid not have the equipment to examine the crevasse. A stack of coins is found during the second Cousteau’s attempt, and the wreck is tentatively dated to the 1st C BC. It is believed to have been built about — BC and yet the delicate bronze clockwork it embodies would not be known to Europe until the Middle Ages. Excellent story-telling about a one-of-a-kind astronomical “computer” from ancient Greece; and the obsessed scholars who spent years trying to decipher how it was built and how it worked.


Dec 03, Gregory rated it really liked it. I found the book light on the detail i wanted on the astronomy, mechanics and maths, wordy where diagrams would have been clearer, patronizing in other areas e. Sims has written for various publications including American Archaeology and the New Statesman and is the author, most recently, of “In the Womb: Amazon Drive Cloud storage from Amazon.

Marchant does her best to represent each fairly, as well as their relation to each other. Drama builds right up to the end, when the magazine Nature published the results of the Antikythera Research Project in November, My review makes the book sound philosophical, and it is at times, but it is also quite technical and a lot of fun.

Author Jo Marchant has created a book that makes the “Indiana Jones” adventure movies seem boring! Besides the amazing technical achievement of the device’s construction in 1st cent. This book explained the mystery of the Antikythera mechanism, the finding and the process of explaining such complex item in a clear and easy reveling way.

East Dane Designer Men’s Fashion. Jan 01, Vincent Anton rated it it was amazing. I’d like to read this book on Kindle Don’t have a Kindle? Early investigations make clear that what they have found is something that experts did not think the ancient Greeks were capable of making. Apr 20, Genevieve rated it really liked it Shelves: People wondered what it was for, how it worked, where it came from, why it was on the ship, and who made it.

The writing is acceptable, if a little dry at times. Well, it seems it was almost years old The Moon in a Box. Along the way there are stories of the jealousy and competition of scientists trying to unravel the origin and use of this device.

But thats totally acceptable, given at times this was a topic that literally 3 people on earth really were really paying attention to.

Maybe the author would rather write fiction. Marchant undertakes to explain the significance of this marvel to the completely uninitiated: The lucky ones got to study the fragile artifact, count its gears, and image it in various ways.


Maybe I just couldn’t help but feel that after that other chapters had been so fun to read. Overall, a good read. As such huge amounts of technical detail were lost.

What other wonders might these be, sleeping in a dark ocean trench? It is a bit disturbing to realize how much more advanced society could be with such a simple change in history the knowledge to create a mechanism like this surviving downfalls of societies.

In the ancient world as now, the route saw heavy traffic between the Ionian and Aegean seas. Not good scientific reporting, but she sure made an absorbing book!

Decoding The Heavens | Jo Marchant | Home

See all 6 reviews. Its purity of design and build imply that it is not Three encrusted bronze fragments collected from a wreck along the coast of Antikythera in by Greek sponge divers in a tiny boat, languished in a cardboard box in the National Archeological Museum in Athens for decades.

For over a hundred years, through wars and upheavals, one decofing after another has fallen under the spell of the Antikythera mechanism, as it came to be called. Ultimately, the determination of what the device did wasn’t as important to the enjoyment of the book as the interesting look at Another of my bargain dollar books, I was expecting more of a “aliens” and “Nostradamus” style book.

The book’s account of the collaboration between Michael Wright and Allan Bromley is disputed.

Jo Marchant: Decoding the Heavens video

Her book is not some fictional archeological novel written in some protected writer’s den – but “Decoding the Heavens” is the real deal. By beginning with the artifact’s discovery, Marchant keeps her story focused on the quest to decipher the “computer” of her subtitle.

Once you start reading this book it is very hard to put it down. The very conception of the artifact that experts call the “Antikythera device” is outrageous, aside from its brilliant engineering.

Feb 08, jeremy rated it really liked it Shelves: This book is brand new and ships directly from Amazon. I hope this book will rekindle interest in this artefact, which still remains under-rated.