DocuWatch on Facebook
Art America Britain History Science Societies War Shop
DocuWatch

Archimedes Secret - (2002)

« Anatomy of an Inventor - (1989)

Astrology, Behind The Horoscope - (1980) »

Description

Archimedes Secret

This is the story of a book that could have changed the history of the World. To the untrained eye, it is nothing more than a small and unassuming Byzantine prayer book, yet it sold at Christies for over m. For faintly visible beneath the prayers on its pages are other, unique, writings - words that have been lost for nearly two thousand years.

The text is the only record of work by one of the world's greatest minds - the ancient Greek, Archimedes - a mathematical genius centuries ahead of his time. Hidden for a millennium in a middle eastern library, it has been written over, broken up, painted on, cut up and re-glued. But in the nick of time scientists have saved the precious, fragile document, and for the first time it is revealing just how revolutionary Archimedes' ideas were. If it had been available to scholars during the Renaissance, we might have reached the Moon over a hundred years ago.

The trail begins in the tenth century, when a scribe made a unique copy of the most important mathematics that Archimedes ever developed. For 200 years the document survived, but the mathematics in it was so complex that no one paid it any attention. So when one day a monk was looking for some new parchment - an expensive commodity at the time - to write a new prayer book, the answer seemed obvious. He used the Archimedes manuscript. He washed the Greek text off the pages, cut them in half, rebound them, and turned the Archimedes manuscript into an everyday prayer book. As he piously wrote out his prayers, he had no idea of the genius he was obliterating.

Several hundred years later, the Renaissance was under way. Scientists were beginning to grapple with new concepts, working out how mathematics could be used to explain the World around them. Little did they know that many of the problems they were just encountering Archimedes had already solved more than a thousand years before. So, tragically, they had to do that research all over again, setting back the development of science and technology immeasurably.

Then in 1906, in Constantinople, the document mysteriously turned up in a monastic library. An opportunistic scholar called Johan Ludwig Heiberg identified the text as Archimedes' writings. Although the Greek text was very faint, Heiberg was able to decipher some of it. What he found astonished him, and made the front page of the New York Times. He revealed that Archimedes' manuscript contained something called 'The Method', which showed not only Archimedes' final proofs, but for the first time revealed the process of how he went about making his discoveries.

Tags

 

Other videos in channel "Horizon":

Aircrash Burning Issue - (1987) Aircrash Burning Issue - (1987) Alien Contact - (2003) Alien Contact - (2003) Aliens from Mars - (1996) Aliens from Mars - (1996)
Anatomy of an Inventor - (1989) Anatomy of an Inventor - (1989) Archimedes Secret - (2002) Archimedes Secret - (2002)
Astrology, Behind The Horoscope - (1980) Astrology, Behind The Horoscope - (1980) Back From The Dead - (2010) Back From The Dead - (2010) Battle Of The Brains - (2007) Battle Of The Brains - (2007)
Bermuda Triangle Bermuda Triangle Better Mind the Computer - (1993) Better Mind the Computer - (1993)
Brains and Babies - (2013) Brains and Babies - (2013) Cannabis - (2009) Cannabis - (2009) Challenger, Go For Launch - (2009) Challenger, Go For Launch - (2009)
Chimps are People too Chimps are People too Close Encounters Close Encounters Colourful Notions - 1984 Colourful Notions - 1984
Crash Crash Deepwater Disaster Deepwater Disaster Defeating the Hackers Defeating the Hackers
Dirty Bomb Dirty Bomb Do I Drink Too Much ? Do I Drink Too Much ? Do You See What I See? Do You See What I See?
Dodging Doomsday - 1992 Dodging Doomsday - 1992 Ecstasy And Agony Ecstasy And Agony Fall of the World Tradecentre - (2002) Fall of the World Tradecentre - (2002)
Fall-out from Chernobyl Fall-out from Chernobyl First Olympian - 2004 First Olympian - 2004 Flight 587 - (2003) Flight 587 - (2003)
Gaze in Wonder - (1989) Gaze in Wonder - (1989) Gentlemen, lift your skirts Gentlemen, lift your skirts God On The Brain God On The Brain
Grand Prix Car 1924 - 1939 Grand Prix Car 1924 - 1939 Guide to the Moon Guide to the Moon Hide and Seek in Iraq - 1992 Hide and Seek in Iraq - 1992
Horizon Guide To Dogs Horizon Guide To Dogs How Big is the Universe How Big is the Universe How Pop Songs Work How Pop Songs Work
How Small is the Universe? How Small is the Universe? How to Avoid Mistakes in Surgery - (2013) How to Avoid Mistakes in Surgery - (2013) How to Commit the Perfect Murder How to Commit the Perfect Murder
How to Kill a Human Being How to Kill a Human Being How to Survive a Disaster How to Survive a Disaster In the Wake of HMS Sheffield (1986) In the Wake of HMS Sheffield (1986)
Inside Chernobyl's Sarcophagas Inside Chernobyl's Sarcophagas Is Alcohol Worse Than Ecstacy Is Alcohol Worse Than Ecstacy Is Science Under Attack Is Science Under Attack
Is Seeing Believing? Is Seeing Believing? King Solomon's Tablet of Stone King Solomon's Tablet of Stone Last Flight Of The Columbia - (2003) Last Flight Of The Columbia - (2003)
Life is Impossible - (1993) Life is Impossible - (1993) Living With ADHD - (2005) Living With ADHD - (2005) Living With Autism Living With Autism
Mad But Glad - (2007) Mad But Glad - (2007) Man On Mars - Mission to Mars Man On Mars - Mission to Mars Microprocessors Microprocessors
MIR Space Station Fire MIR Space Station Fire Mission To Mars Mission To Mars Monitor Me (2013) Monitor Me (2013)
Moon for Sale Moon for Sale Moving Still (1980) Moving Still (1980) Mystery of the Left Hand Mystery of the Left Hand
Mystery Of The Miami Circle Mystery Of The Miami Circle New Star in Orbit New Star in Orbit Newsday Revolution - (1988) Newsday Revolution - (1988)
No Ordinary Genius No Ordinary Genius Now The Chips Are Down - 1977-1978 Now The Chips Are Down - 1977-1978 Nuclear Nightmares Nuclear Nightmares
Prof. Reagan's Supermarket Secrets Prof. Reagan's Supermarket Secrets Reflections on a River - (1984) Reflections on a River - (1984) Secrets of The Star Disk Secrets of The Star Disk
Signs of Life - (1990) Signs of Life - (1990) Skyscraper Fire Fighters - (2007) Skyscraper Fire Fighters - (2007) Smokers' Luck Smokers' Luck
Solar Storms The Threat to Planet Earth Solar Storms The Threat to Planet Earth Space Tourists Space Tourists Stone Age Columbus Stone Age Columbus
Stuff - A Horizon Guide to Materials Stuff - A Horizon Guide to Materials Swallowed By a Sinkhole Swallowed By a Sinkhole The 7/7 Bombers The 7/7 Bombers
The Canal in the Jungle (1988) The Canal in the Jungle (1988) The Case of ESP - (1983) The Case of ESP - (1983) The Case of the Ancient Astronauts The Case of the Ancient Astronauts
The Chopper The Chopper The Computer That Ate Hollywood The Computer That Ate Hollywood The Core The Core
The Dark Secret of Hendrik Schön - (2004) The Dark Secret of Hendrik Schön - (2004) The Electronic Frontier The Electronic Frontier The Hunt for AI The Hunt for AI
The Knowledge Explosion - (1964) The Knowledge Explosion - (1964) The Mondragon Experiment - (1980) The Mondragon Experiment - (1980) The Plane That Disappeared - (1999) The Plane That Disappeared - (1999)
The real truth about alcohol - drugs The real truth about alcohol - drugs The Secret Lives of Dogs The Secret Lives of Dogs The Secret World Of Pain The Secret World Of Pain
The Space Shuttle -  A Horizon Guide 2012 The Space Shuttle - A Horizon Guide 2012 The Sunspot Mystery The Sunspot Mystery The Truth About Exercise (2012) The Truth About Exercise (2012)
The Truth About Looking Young The Truth About Looking Young The Truth About Taste Discovery - 2013 The Truth About Taste Discovery - 2013 The Wizard Who Spat On The Floor - (1972) The Wizard Who Spat On The Floor - (1972)
The Woman who thinks like a Cow - (2006) The Woman who thinks like a Cow - (2006) Thinking Thinking To Engineer is Human (1987) To Engineer is Human (1987)
Traces Of Murder - (1988) Traces Of Murder - (1988) Turned on by Danger - 1997 Turned on by Danger - 1997 We Are The Aliens -  2006 We Are The Aliens - 2006
We Love Cigarettes - (2006) We Love Cigarettes - (2006) What Is Reality? What Is Reality? What's Killing Our Bees - 2013 What's Killing Our Bees - 2013
Whatever Happened to Star Wars? (1993) Whatever Happened to Star Wars? (1993) Whatever Happened to the Energy Crisis - 1982 Whatever Happened to the Energy Crisis - 1982 Whats The Problem With Nudity - 2009 Whats The Problem With Nudity - 2009
Where is Flight MH370? - (2014) Where is Flight MH370? - (2014) Where's My Robot? (2008) Where's My Robot? (2008) Winning Gold in 2012 - (2006) Winning Gold in 2012 - (2006)
Video channels
Videos in this channel
Adsense
Featured
Featured
Featured
Featured
Featured
Featured