October 29, 1998

On This Date in TWISTED-HISTORY! in 1998, the oldest known copy of Archimedes’ work sold for $2 million at a New York auction. It was a diagram of a crudely drawn man holding the end of a very long lever that was positioned between a picture of the earth and a conveniently placed rock. Each portion of the diagram included handwritten descriptions in Greek, such as; earth, rock, very long lever, me, Archimedes. There was also this saying written in Greek; Give me a lever long enough and a place to put and I can move the world.

In 2004 the copy was proven to be false for the following reasons. First, the writings were in current Greek, not ancient Greek. Second, the paper was an 8X14 sheet ripped from a yellow legal pad (with lines) and the back of the paper had a grocery list, written in English, for two dozen eggs, one roll of toilet paper, one loaf of bread, and a case of Coronas. Last and most definitely not least, the drawing of the world on the paper showed the continents of North and South America.

About Joel Byers

Born in North Georgia and educated at some very fine public institutions. Real education started after graduating from college and then getting married and raising two boys. Has the ability to see the funny and absurd in most things and will always remark on it, even if it means getting the stink-eye from his victims.
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