Notable Inventions of the 1st to 5th Centuries

Posted in Science

Dates for inventions are often controversial. Inventions are often invented by several inventors around the same time, or may be invented in an impractical form many years before another inventor improves the invention into a practical form. Where there is ambiguity, the date of the first working version of the invention is used here.

1-100 AD: Junk ship in China

1-100 AD: Rudder in China

38 AD: Hydraulic-powered bellows: Du Shi

50 AD: Mouldboard plough in China and Gaul

77 AD: Encyclopedia (comprehensive work): Pliny the Elder

78-139: Hydraulic-powered armillary sphere: Zhang Heng

78-139: Seismometer: Zhang Heng

100s: Aeolipile: Hero of Alexandria in Roman Egypt

100s: Carding in India

105: Paper: Cai Lun in China

132: Rudimentary Seismometer: Zhang Heng in China

180: Rotary fan: Ding Huan in China

180: Winnowing fan: Ding Huan in China

200s: Kongming lantern (Hot air balloon) in China

200s: Horseshoes in Germany

200-400: Stepwell in India

300s: Toothpaste in Roman Egypt

400s: Horse collar in China

400s: Cotton gin in India

Fore-and-aft rig in India

Kamal in India

Prayer wheel: Tibet

Three-masted merchant vessel in China

Woodblock printing in China


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