Superweapons of the Ancient World (2004): S01E01 – The Claw


Introduction

Superweapons of the Ancient World is a history, technology documentary hosted by Glenn Wrage, and aired by Discovery Channel in 2004.

Outline

According to ancient records, Greek genius Archimedes created a terrifying secret weapon that plucked Roman warships from the sea and smashed them against the rocks. An entire Roman fleet was forced to abandon its assault on Syracuse, Archimedes’ home, in 213 BC. Could such a devastating weapon – which became known as the claw – really have existed?

To build one today, the team debates what technology was available to Archimedes – surely no wooden crane could really have lifted a 100-ton-plus ship right out of the waves. They determine that Archimedes may have had an even more brilliant idea – after all, he wrote extensively on buoyancy and the theory of pulleys and levers. The team builds a giant boom on a swivelling tower, with a great taloned “claw” to swing out and smash into a replicated Roman galley ship. Can they sink it?

Superweapons of the Ancient World Series

You can find a full index and overview of Superweapons of the Ancient World here.

Production & Filming Details

  • Release Date: 07 October 2004.
  • Running time: 49 minutes (per episode).
  • Rating: PG.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

YouTube Link

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