This work deals with mechanical manufacturing processes in history, examined through the machines
associated with those processes. A tool is only included if it is part of a machine tool, with devices
made up of moving parts. Once the analytical field has been marked out, the chosen descriptive method
is basically graphic.
This historical compendium attempts to give a wide-angle view of historical development without making
an in-depth analysis of each of the examples presented. Moreover, this book illustrates the historical
development of machines and mechanisms more from a technical point of view rather than a strictly
history of science point of view since the authors are mechanical engineers who are interested and
motivated to examine the most significant facts in their own area of knowledge of the Theory of Machines
and Mechanisms. A full understanding of the historical development of Technology also needs the help of
experts in technical matters who can appreciate and reassess bygone achievements in the light of their
own technical knowledge. More collaboration between science historians and technical experts is needed,
as is currently the case in the field of Industrial Archaeology. Thus, this book is also an attempt to
set out a technical approach to the historical development of machines and mechanisms, but without too
many technical details that will prevent its understanding being purely historical.
At the beginning of each chapter there is a global reference to the period embraced, the most relevant
facts, and the most significant treatises in the context of machine history. Following this introduction
each chapter contains a series of sections on the types of machines that are representative of the period
analysed together with illustrations to accompany the text. A fairly extensive bibliography enables the
reader to make a deeper historical analysis.
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