By Catherine Tsounis
Puppet Shows or Automatic Theater was invented by Hero of Alexandria who lived over 2100 years ago. I visited Kosta Kotsanas museums in Athens and Heraklion, Crete, which has recreated the inventions of the ancient Greeks. A precise reconstruction of the automatic theater recreates the myth of Dionysus, Greek God of wine.
The puppet theater shows the following: A fire lit in front of Dionysus altar; water springing from wand; drums and cymbals heard while puppets dance around temple; fire lights in another side of temple with more music and dancing puppets. All accomplished with use of axels, reels, rope lead weight all mechanically timed. 1Greek and Roman Byzantine science destroyed with the end of paganism and rediscovered in Italy’s Renaissance over 1200 years later.
Heron of Alexandria, also called Hero, (flourished 62 AD, Alexandria, Egypt), Greek geometer and inventor whose writings preserved for posterity a knowledge of the mathematics and engineering of Babylonia, ancient Egypt, and the Greco-Roman world. Heron’s most important geometric work, Metrica, was lost until 1896.2 Visit in Athens and Heraklion, Crete. For locations and hours, visit https://kotsanas.com/gb
1. https://kotsanas.com/gb/exh.php?exhibit=0101002- video of mobile