Word of the Day: Automaton

I’m blogging on Our Mutual Friends today about the movie Hugo, automatons, and early movie history, so I thought I’d skip ahead in the dictionary a bit and post on automaton.

An automaton is anything that can move or act on its own. It also refers to mechanical men popular in the 1700 and 1800’s. “Automaton” comes from the Greek word automatos, self-moving, self-thinking.

Automaton "Draughtsman-Writer" at the Franklin Institute in Philadephlia

Automaton “Draughtsman-Writer” at the Franklin Institute in Philadephlia

3-automaton_poem

Poem the “Draughtsman-Writer” that revealed the automaton’s inventer–Henri Maillardet.

Interested in these fascinating machines or what they have to do with the movie Hugo? Then check out my post on Our Mutual Friends.