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   Undertoad  Sunday Mar 16 12:12 PM

3/16/2003: Chariot find

The problem with just saving the URLs from potential IotD images is that sometimes the story goes away before I use the image, and that's the case today. All I know is the obvious: this dig found a rather well-preserved sector of chariot parts, along with the horses that would have pulled it.

The thing that amazes me is the wheels. I would have thought they'd made wheels out of solid blocks of wood. That sure looks like some kind of metal rim and axle - did they have spokes?

The idea that civilizations figured various things out, then died off without passing along their information, is totally amazing to me.

paranoid  Sunday Mar 16 01:22 PM

Thadius, despite your Roman-sounding nick, you are not exactly right about the history.

BTW, there is an excellent book, called "Ancient inventions" by Peter James and Nick Thorpe. Metal rim and axle is nothing - did you know that in early first century before our era Roman engineer Vitrivius described the working model of a hodometer (odometer), a device "which enables us, while sitting in a carriage on the road... to know how many miles of a journey we have accomplished." Now that's an accomploshment.

Add to this Greek steam engines, Roman fire engines, Aztec chewing gum, Etruscan false teeth, earthquake detectors in China, electric batteries in Iraq, Stone Age brain surgery, Middle Age hand grenades, etc. A fascinating reading.

Thadius  Sunday Mar 16 01:27 PM

This picture shows a solid structure within the wheel, although they did develop spoked wheels with metal tyres and axle sleeves.

The US rail system is also based on the Roman Chariot spec and is 4ft 8 1/2 inches. As the Romans spread throughout Europe and built roads most of the ruts that appeared were from Chariots. From this all other road using wagons would build to the same gauge in order to stay within the same ruts.

The US rail structure was built by English Ex-pats who brought with them patterns and Jigs used in the Tram systems in England at the time which were based on the Romans Disciplines.

I am also amazed that the Romans seemed to have invented the thong along the way to ..Bigger picture of same chariot

xoxoxoBruce  Sunday Mar 16 06:37 PM

Originally wheels were solid wood tree slices but they cracked and split so they were reinforced with wood strips. Then a metal tire was added to increase longevity. A spoked wheel with a metal axel sleeve reduced weight and increased speed. When the automobile needed to go faster, axel bearings and a rubber tire then pneumatic rubber tire were added but the wheel was still the wooden spoked design on most cars and all trucks. On lighter vehicles the metal spoked wheel replaced wood until the stronger steels were invented and solid steel or "disc" wheels were introduced well into the 20th century. So the steel, then other lightweight metal, wheels have not been around very long. The wooden wheel reigned for thousands of years.

wolf  Sunday Mar 16 07:33 PM

Originally posted by Thadius
I am also amazed that the Romans seemed to have invented the thong along the way to ..Bigger picture of same chariot
Well, lad, what the heck did you think the romans wore under their togas? boxers???

Griff  Sunday Mar 16 07:46 PM

Is that an electric bullwhip or...

wolf  Sunday Mar 16 07:56 PM

No, Griff, he's just happy to see me.

If necessary, I would step up to the plate to assist that mightily thewed warrior in testing it out ...

(I always liked Frazetta's mighitly thewed warriors. Borises' all looked like him. Total turn-off)

One other thing ... point of technical fact, that's a carriage whip (long handle) not a bullwhip. I don't know that that type would be used for driving a chariot team .... might be as anachronistic as the thongs.

novice  Sunday Mar 16 08:27 PM

why are they so intact. seems to me they would have been scavenged by something, unless they were buried and if so why didn't wreckers salvage the wheels etc. Guess you had to be there

wolf  Sunday Mar 16 08:33 PM

My guess would be it was part of a ritual burial.

juju  Sunday Mar 16 11:33 PM

I think I've found the story that goes with this image. Looks like it was found in Greece.,00.html,00.html

Thadius  Monday Mar 17 01:50 AM

Well, lad, what the heck did you think the romans wore
under their togas? boxers???
I spent most of my childhood avoiding the great wedgie, this childish prank to cause amused discomfort and a display of skiddies, and to find that the romans, as clever as they seemed, suffered from the same.

It makes me wonder what came before the 'Atomic Wedgie'.

Not necessarily boxers, but a nice line in 'Y' fronts maybe.

Undertoad  Monday Mar 17 09:51 AM

But your language suggests you're a Brit, where boys inhumanity to boys is not as common as in the US? One would hope?

Your reply here?

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