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The book presents easily readable explanation of carbon arc lights and a history of their use in nineteenth and twentieth-century searchlights (electric mirrors) and lighthouses. Its numerous illustrations, explanations, and historical testimony (from the horses mouths) set a firm foundation for the reader to better understand the ancient advancements in electricity.
By pharos, Section Reviews, Posted on Sun May 21, 2006 at 11:24:58 PM PST
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The editor (Larry Radka) has carefully laid out the ancient and modern illustrations (often in a comparative manner) on the appropriate pages that match up well with the text. Although this was time-consuming it means readers are not distracted by having to leap back and forth between the text and a bunch of pictures stuck in various parts of the book.
??Radka also provides strong evidence derived from cuneiform and hieroglyphic tablets that seemingly proves that the ancients had the materials necessary (such as copper, lead, iron, zinc, glass, sal ammoniac, and sulfuric acid) to create primary and secondary electric cells.
The Electric Mirror on the Pharos Lighthouse and Other Ancient Lighting is quite intriguing, but it is not what it is advertised to be. Mr. Radka, the titular author, added few paragraphs of his own, but merely reprinted a work that appears to have been done about a hundred years ago, back when electric lights were cutting edge technology.
In this way, it is a very disappointing piece of reading, for those who want to seriously investigate the possibility that the ancients possessed primitive electrical lights.
The Electric Mirror on the Pharos Lighthouse and other ancient lighting
The pictures, and even the type fonts, are from the early 1900s. The celebrated footnotes are just that: mere footnotes with no bibliographical worth at all.
The great Egyptologist John Gardner Wilkinson pointed out that the ancient Egyptian paintings offer few representations of lamps, torches, or any other kind of light. Why–when they illustrate almost every other ancient Egyptian article? It is because people are not looking for ancient electric lights so they simply do not recognize them!
Mr. Radka, or some scholar, should reissue this book with genuine footnotes that verify its many intriguing assertions. If it could be proven that the ancients enjoyed some form of electrical lighting, it would completly revamp our understanding of the cultures of ancient Egypt and the Middle East.
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The publisher and the author (editor) are one.
With his heavily illustrated book that explores the possibility that ancient civilizations had harnessed the power of electricity, author Larry Radka may just change your mind. With a library of more than 5,000 books at his disposal, his research displays a multitude of examples where the ancients used batteries, telescopes, mirror weapons, as well as carbon arc lighting. He also presents evidence that several ancient structures, such as the Pharos Lighthouse of Alexandria, was powered by carbon arc lights and battery jars. In addition, Radka, a retired broadcast engineer, also suggests that ancient India, the Babylonians, Sumerians, Greeks, Parthians, Romans, Persians, Sassanians, and Assyrians used electricity to illuminate their temples, tombs, fortresses, and palaces.
No other work on the subject documents as much ancient Egyptian, Sumerian, Babylonian, Hebrew, Assyrian, Indian, Greek, Roman, Parthian, Persian, and Sassanian as well as medieval evidence of this fact. Furthermore, the work recalls interesting details and descriptions (some of which have never before been translated into English) of the ancient Alexandrian Pharos Lighthouse and its reflective telescope and electric beacon.
The ancient electric cells (batteries) found in Iraq in the 1930s and the evidence of ancient electroplating serve as a basis for the added proofs of the use of ancient electricity. From there, Radka presents illustrations of numerous artifacts and monuments that clearly demonstrate the use of ancient electric mirrors or searchlights. He also presents, what he describes as, strong evidence from cuneiform tablets and other sources that the ancients had all the materials (like copper, lead, iron, zinc, glass, sal ammoniac, sulfuric acid, etc.) at hand to make powerful primary and secondary electric cells. When we couple this to other ancient testimony of the use of extremely bright lights illuminating large areas, the only conclusion we can come to is that they had to have been powered by electricity.
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A Review posted by science writer David Bradley at SciScoop, a science news forum
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This book aims to prove, through a comprehensive layout of ancient coins, artifacts, monuments, and literature, that the ancients used electricity to light up their temples, tombs, lighthouses, fortresses, palaces, cities and other edifices and critical areas.
However, it is very fascinating in its elucidation of primitive batteries that have been found, and in its correlation between electical arc lights and Egyptian hieroglyphics that seem to portray them. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to verify if these hieroglyphics are actual or fabrications.
??Anyone with even a passing interest in ancient technology, electricity, or electrical engineering should purchase a copy of this fascinating book. Illustrations and historical testimony are numerous and the erudite level of research in this fascinating tome establishes a foundation of acumen rarely achieved by previous scholars.
The Electric Mirror is published by Einhorn Press, 1314 Oak Street, Parkersburg, WV 26101, Telephone: (304) 485 3402. You can contact Radka at LarryBrianRadka–AT—hotmail.
This trade paperback was a very pleasant and informative surprise. A heavily illustrated book that explores the possibility that ancient humanity had harnessed the power of electricity. Preposterous you say, well Mr. Radka, a retired broadcast engineer may just change your mind. His investigation into this possibility was an exhaustive effort. With a library of more than 5,000 books at his disposal, his research displays a multitude of examples where the ancients used batteries, telescopes, mirror weapons, as well as carbon arc lighting. Radka s arguments are very intriguing. He shows evidence that several ancient structures such as the Pharos Lighthouse of Alexandria, which was one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, was powered by carbon arc lights and battery jars. In addition to the ancient Egyptians, Radka also provides evidence that ancient Indians, the ancient Babylonians, Sumerians, Greeks, Parthians, Romans, Persians, Sassanians and Assyrians possessed the technology of electricity to illuminate their temples, tombs, fortresses and palaces. Radka examines a multitude of coins, assorted artifacts, tablets, monuments, folklore tales and artwork from these cultures and came to an astounding conclusion; the ancients had the capability of illuminating the night and dark places with lights. Illustrations and historical testimony are numerous and this erudite level of research establishes a foundation of acumen never before achieved by any previous scholar on this topic. In short layman s terms, I do believe Mr. Radka has indeed discovered something here. Radka also shows, and I think most importantly, strong evidence derived from cuneiform and hieroglyphic tablets that seemingly proves the ancients had the various materials necessary copper, lead, iron, zinc, glass, sal ammoniac, sulfuric acid- available to create primary and secondary electric cells. For instance, Radka shows several Greek coins depicting what appears to be ancient search lights at Sicily s Strait of Messina. I would urge anyone with even a passing interest in ancient technology, electricity, electrical engineering or the ancient mechanisms that potentially could have generated covalence, to purchase a copy. You would be remiss not to do so. Simply stated, this is one of the most important publications on the topic of ancient technology and lighting you will ever find. –Michael Lohr is a professional journalist, outdoorsman, music critic, treasure hunter and adventurer. His writing has appeared in such magazines as Rolling Stone, Esquire, The Economist, Southern Living, Sporting News & Mens Journal, to name a few.
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SYNOPSIS of The Electric Mirror on the Pharos Lighthouse and Other Ancient Lighting. This book aims to prove that the ancients used electricity to light up their temples, tombs, lighthouses, fortresses, palaces, cities and other edifices and critical areas.