Warning message

Important Note

We are excited to welcome you back to the Museum! Advanced tickets are required and are now available for purchase. We are currently opening ticket availability on a rolling basis. Currently, dates extend into August. Visit our Health & Safety page for updates

Aeolipile

Glass Dictionary

(from Greek) The name sometimes given to globular or pear-shaped objects with a narrow neck and mouth. The function of these objects is uncertain. The word was originally applied to a device, invented in the second century B.C., in which a closed, water-filled vessel, when heated, was made to rotate by jets of steam issuing from one or more projecting, bent tubes. Most surviving aeolipiles, however, are Islamic; they are believed to be containers.