aeolipile

noun

ae·​ol·​i·​pile
variants or less commonly aeolipyle or eolipile
ē-ˈä-lə-ˌpīl
plural -s
: an apparatus that was invented in the second century b.c. and is often called the first steam engine and that consisted essentially of a closed vessel (as a globe or cylinder) with one or more projecting bent tubes out of which steam is made to pass from the vessel, the action of the steam jets causing it to revolve

Word History

Etymology

Latin & Greek; Latin aeolipila, by folk etymology (influence of Latin pila ball) from Greek aiolipylē, Aiolon pylē, from aioli- (from Aiolos, god of wind) or Aiolon (genitive of Aiolos) + pylē gate

First Known Use

1654, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of aeolipile was in 1654

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Cite this Entry

“Aeolipile.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/aeolipile. Accessed 26 May. 2024.

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