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Diving History | First Technique For Under Aquatic Work

Under Aquatic Diving History

Archaeological excavations have revealed mother-of-pearl inlays dated as early as 4500 BC, which must have been gathered by breath-hold divers. Although this is the earliest indication of man’s first technique for under aquatic work.

An Assyrian Frieze (900 BC) depicts an early under aquatic warrior.  Approximately 330 BC, Alexander the Great is reported to have used a primitive form of Diving Bell called the ” Colimpha” to see for himself the wonders of the deep.

history diving skeleton
history diving skeleton
The first practical extension of man’s ability to carry out more prolonged work under aquatic came with the advent of the diving bells. In the 16th Century when in 1535, Guglielmo de Lorena developed what is accepted as the first real Diving Bell. Using this equipment, a Diver was able to work for approximately one hour on Lake Remi near Rome.
history diving skeleton
history diving skeleton

In 1691, the famous astronomer Sir Edmund Halley introduced the forerunner of the modern Diving Bell. The Air in the Bell is replenished using barrels of fresh air passed down from the surface. Almost a century later, in 1788, Smeaton added a “force pump” to allow air to be pumped from the surface. Many notable feats of salvage were conducted using these primitive diving bells, some of which allowed a diver to work outside its confines using small flexible breathing pipes. 


The development of diving bells in the 16th Century, including Guglielmo de Lorena’s and Sir Edmund Halley’s contributions, revolutionized under aquatic work. These early bells were replenished with fresh air and enabled notable salvage feats using breathing pipes.

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