facts about the invention
of the Wheel by Mesopotamian's in c3500
|The wheel is probably
the most important mechanical invention of all time. Nearly every machine built since the
beginning of the Industrial Revolution involves a single, basic principle embodied in one
of mankinds truly significant inventions. Its hard to imagine any mechanized
system that would be possible without the wheel or the idea of a symmetrical component
moving in a circular motion on an axis. From tiny watch gears to automobiles, jet engines
and computer disk drives, the principle is the same.
Based on diagrams on ancient clay
tablets, the earliest known use of this essential invention was a potters wheel that
was used at Ur in Mesopotamia (part of modern day Iraq} as early as 3500 BC. The first use of the wheel for
transportation was probably on Mesopotamian chariots in 3200 BC. It is interesting to note
that wheels may have had industrial or manufacturing applications before they were used on
A wheel with spokes first appeared on Egyptian chariots around 2000 BC, and wheels seem
to have developed in Europe by 1400 BC without any influence from the Middle East. Because
the idea of the wheel appears so simple, its easy to assume that the wheel would
have simply "happened" in every culture when it reached a particular level of
sophistication. However, this is not the case. The great Inca, Aztec and Maya
civilizations reached an extremely high level of development, yet they never used the
wheel. In fact, there is no evidence that the use of the wheel existed among native people
anywhere in the Western Hemisphere until well after contact with Europeans.
Even in Europe, the wheel evolved little until the beginning of the nineteenth century.
However, with the coming of the Industrial Revolution the wheel became the central
component of technology, and came to be used in thousands of ways in countless different
Transportation History from The Great Idea Finder
ON THE BOOKSHELF:
Inventions That Shaped World History
by Bill Yenne, Morton, Dr. Grosser (Editor) / Paperback - 112 pages
(1993) / Bluewood Books
This book contains inventions from all around the world from microchips to fire. This is a
really good book if you are going to do research on inventions.
by Lionel Bender / Hardcover: 64 pages / DK Publishing Inc; 1st edition
(June 1, 2000
A unique and fascinating introduction to the amazing variety of inventions,
both ancient and modern. From simple machines such as wheels, gears,
pulleys, and levers,
The Engines of Our Ingenuity : An Engineer Looks at Technology and Culture
by John H. Lienhard / Paperback: 272 pages / Oxford University Press, USA
(December 4, 2003)
Based on episodes from Lienhard's widely
broadcast public radio series, this intriguing set of essays begins with a
simple premise: more than we often care to admit, our lives are shaped by
our machines. Fleshing out this proposition, Lienhard ransacks 2,000 years
of scientific and technological history, cobbling together a quirky
biography of the strange being he calls homo technologicus.
Wheels: A Pictorial History
by Edwin Tunis / Paperback: 96 pages / Johns Hopkins University Press; (September 1, 2002)
Nothing like the wheel exists in nature; it may be one of humanity's
greatest inventions. In Wheels, writer and illustrator Edwin Tunis traces
the development of the wheel over 5,000 years, his accurate drawings and
lucid text depicting the human victory over space and inertia.
1000 Inventions & Discoveries
by Roger Bridgman / Hardcover: 256 pages / Dorling Kindersley Publishing; (August 1, 2002)
Profiles of the famous (and not-so-famous) men and women who have had
"Eureka!" moments, a running timeline which puts the inventions and
discoveries in historical context, and feature boxes highlighting key topics
make this chronologically ordered volume a must-have for school and home
From Da Vinci to Biro (Out of
Struan Reid, Patrica Fara,, Ross Watton (Illustrator) / Paperback - 48 pages (1994)
/ EDC Pub.
This book looks at the men and women whose ideas and creations have changed our lives.
Brief descriptions of hundreds of inventions from the earliest to the computer age.
ON THE WEB:
The Evolution of
The true beginnings of the wheel date back possibly as far as the
Paleolithic era (15,000 to 750,000 years ago). This wheel was nothing more
than a log, laid alongside others, which was placed beneath a load to be
Invention of the Wheel at ThinkQuest
Today, we see
that the wheel has indeed undergone a drastic transformation from a simple
one made of wood to the pneumatic rubber tyres that we see on vehicles
of the Wheel
The wheel was almost certainly invented in Mesopotamia—present-day Iraq.
Estimates on when this may have occurred range from 5500 to 3000 BC, with
most guesses closer to a 4000 BC date.
Continuous rotation was the conceptual hurdle. Two primary examples, the
vehicle wheel and the potter's wheel, arose about the same time. Article by
John H. Lienhard.
All the inventions that have ever been created weren’t just something that
was already drawn out on a piece of paper for the inventors. They had to
think. They had to imagine the masterpiece before it was even a physical
A Funny Evolution of the Wheel
I'm very excited to announce a new invention of mine. I call it "The Wheel,"
and I think it could really revolutionize transportation. From outward
appearances the Wheel may seem very simple, yet I think you'll find that it
has the potential to be used in countless ways. Contributed by Keith Cronin.
Sources in BOLD Type
page revised March, 2005.
Berners-Lee's invention has revolutionized the world like nothing
The invention of the Internet,
should be classed with the greatest events of the 20th Century.
The Aero Sport All-Terrain Bed
with Dual Power Pump is the perfect addition to any camping trip or weekend
book, is the perfect desktop reference for both the science novice and the
technologically advanced reader alike.
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