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Dublin: 17 °C Sunday 31 May, 2020
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Your evening longread: Who invented the wheel - and how on earth did they do it?

It’s a coronavirus-free zone as we bring you an interesting longread each evening to take your mind off the news.

Image: Shutterstock/Marijana Batinic

EVERY WEEK, WE bring you a round-up of the best longreads of the past seven days in Sitdown Sunday.

For the next few weeks, we’ll be bringing you an evening longread to enjoy. With the news cycle dominated by the coronavirus situation, we know it can be hard to take your mind off what’s happening.

So we want to bring you an interesting read every weekday evening to help transport you somewhere else.

We’ll be keeping an eye on new longreads and digging back into the archives for some classics.

Who invented the wheel?

A fascinating look at how the wheel was invented – an invention that changed the world.

(Wired, approx 12 mins reading time)

The oldest axle ever discovered is not on a wagon or cart, but instead on a potter’s wheel in Mesopotamia. These may seem like simple machines, but they’re the first evidence that anyone anywhere recognized the center of a spinning disk is stationary and used it to their mechanical advantage. It’s a completely ingenious observation and so novel it’s unclear where the idea came from—perhaps from a bead spinning on string?—as it has no obvious corollary in nature. The pole is called an axle, and many scholars consider it the greatest mechanical insight in the history of humankind.

Read all of the Evening Longreads here>

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