11/3/08Report of Visit to Rhodes. I was on the island of Rhodes from October 18 to 27, 2008, with a day-long excursion to the island of Symi and a morning trip to Lindos, where I had been 49 years before, between my freshman and sophomore years. In the City of Rhodes, I visited all the usual highlights and did research at the Archaeological Service of the Dodecanese Islands. I spoke to a half-dozen different people before finding a French-speaking academic who was very helpful. Speaking French was in general more successful than speaking English or my bad Greek. The French lady had attended the Universite de Geneve and she was delighted to hear I had just come from giving a talk there. Generally I was disappointed by the lack of a card index by topic (forget about a computer index). The card catalog is only by author. Without people, the place would be impenetrable for a visitor. But they do have a big collection of books and the staff is knowledgable and helpful (one must come in the morning only).
Archaeological Service of the Dodecanese
Francophone Academic at Archaeological Service
Ancient Technology - Triremes, Other Ships Sources: Scott Bushey has recommended as a source the UK Nautical Archeology Society based in Poretsmouth, UK. In 1858, Prof. Sterling Dow sent me to the Widener Library to look at old issues of the Mariner's Mirror. Proceedings of conferences or themed issues of journals on the subject of ancient technology have included articles on triremes.
11/3/08 Report on Visit to Sackler Library, Ashmolean/Bodleian, Oxford. I was in Oxford October 29 and 30. I felt sure that Sackler would have a good index. I registered with the Bodleian at Clarendon House off the Broad (my readers' permit goes back to 2000 and is good only for four years), then trooped over to the Ashmolean where the round Sackler Library is mecca for study of the antiquities. I was disappointed because for my purposes Google does a better job of searching than the Oxford library catalog. The librarians at Sackler admitted that the catalog wasn't helping with my detailed questions. But they gave me about six leads and I sent some pleasant although tiring hours roaming through the stacks on three floors.
Automata - Sackler Library
Ancient Technology - Statues
11/3/08Report onVisit to Rhodes City and Lindos and Symi. At the archeological institute for the Dodecanese I asked, prompted by an East Hampton friend who is interested in the topic, if they knew about the automata, the statues in ancient Greece that moved. They said no, but they did bring me several proceedings of meetings on ancient technology, the most useful of which was in German, which I was able to struggle through with the help of the pictures. The technology conferences were the magic prism through which I was able to find some useful material on the automata. The best lead was the Helios/Apollo at Alexandria with a moving deer in his hand. A connection to Rhodes is sstrongly uggested by the fact that Helios (to whom the Acropolis at Rhodes City is dedicated) and the deer (from Artemis, the huntress) are the two main symbols of Rhodes.
The statue of Helios/Apollo with deer in his hand. The deer moves.