Website BlackBird, of the Virginia Commonwealth University, has this article on a 400-year-old self-acting automaton doing the mea culpa, while holding a cross and a rosary.
From the article:
In the Smithsonian Institution is a sixteenth-century automaton of a monk, made of wood and iron, 15 inches in height. Driven by a key-wound spring, the monk walks in a square, striking his chest with his right arm, raising and lowering a small wooden cross and rosary in his left hand, turning and nodding his head, rolling his eyes, and mouthing silent obsequies. From time to time, he brings the cross to his lips and kisses it. After over 400 years, he remains in good working order. Tradition attributes his manufacture to one Juanelo Turriano, mechanician to Emperor Charles V. The story is told that the emperor's son King Philip II, praying at the bedside of a dying son of his own, promised a miracle for a miracle, if his child be spared. And when the child did indeed recover, Philip kept his bargain by having Turriano construct a miniature penitent homunculus.
The above image is from the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.
|The USB Typewriter Keyboards|
|Library of Congress Acquires Entire Twitter Archive|
|The Things a Web Developer From the 90s Will Remember|
|The complicated history of simple scientific facts|
|Modern Prehistoric Flint Tools|
|“We are considering public transport free of charge in order to reduce the number of private cars.”|
|"Automation will disrupt millions of Canadian jobs, not far in the future, but in the next dozen years."|
|"What if plant cells could be grown for food by regular people."|
|The 24 Carrot Cake|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|“What happens when anyone can make it appear as if anything has happened, regardless of whether or not it did?"|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|“Can a platform be 'cool' if your aunt, grandfather, and third grade teacher all use it?”|
|Fake Name Generator|
|“From Self-Driving Cars to Beyond!”|