Welcome to the Web Site of the Hellenic Archives of Scientific Instruments. These pages are maintained in the scope of the Program of History, Philosophy and Didactics of Science and Technology of the Institute of Neohellenic Research, of the National Hellenic Research Foundation and the University of Athens. The Program is associated to the National Observatory of Athens .
These archives concern the scientific instruments that are located in Greece and are dated before 1970. The project has been supported by the program "Archives de la création", of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in France. The project runs in collaboration with the Laboratory of Science Education & Epistemology, and Educational Technology (University of Athens, Department of Primary Education).
The Great School of the Nation (Megali Genous Scholi in Greek) known also as Phanar Greek Orthodox College is of exceptional significance, especially for the Greeks of Constantinople. Founded to serve as the Patriarchal School in 1454 by the Patriarch Gennadius Scholarios (its first principal was M. Kamariotis). It has operated continuously to this day, except for a small interval in 1821.
The historical building of the National Observatory of Athens (the “Sinas” building, named after its 19th century sponsor, Baron George Sinas) is now a history of Astronomy and Earth sciences Museum. The Museum presents three thematic exhibitions, “Time and space”, “Astronomy and its measuring instruments” and “Meteorology”. In the future, the basement of the Museum will hold a permanent exhibition on the history of seismology and an astro-geophysical historical path will lead the visitor form the Hill of Pnyka, where the Ancient Greek astronomer Meto made his observations, to the Sinas’ building.
The Museum includes also the big Gautier Meridian Circle and the big Gautier equatorial refractor. Note that the Observatory owns also the big Newall refractor at the Penteli astronomical station.