|Title||The Antikythera Mechanism and the Public Face of Greek Science|
|Publication Type||Conference Proceedings|
|Year of Publication||2012|
|Authors||Jones, Alexander R.|
|Conference Name||From Antikythera to the Square Kilometre Array: Lessons from the Ancients|
|Conference Start Date||12/06/2012|
From the outset two questions have dominated the study of the Antikythera Mechanism: what did it do? and what was it for? The first question, essentially the problem of reconstructing the Mechanism as the integral, functioning object that it was when it was manufactured, has largely been solved. The second question remains open to dispute. I attempt in the present paper to show how our present knowledge of the Mechanism's functions and the texts that were inscribed on its exterior point to its having been constructed primarily as a didactic device through which the complexity and unity of Hellenistic astronomy and cosmology could be made comprehensible to a lay audience.