Pendulums started out in clocks and were the most accurate way to measure time until the 1930’s. The word pendulum is Latin for “pendulus” meaning hanging. A pendulum is hung from a fixed point enabling it to swing freely back and forth due to gravity and inertia.
Grandfather Clock Pendulum
Back in the first century the pendulum was used in seismometers to detect the direction of earthquakes.
Pendulum in the Cathedral Metropolitan
By the 1930’s the pendulum gave way to the quartz clock. Over the years pendulums have been made out of different materials and in different lengths. Some clocks still use this method today, namely the grandfather clock and some mantel clocks.
The pendulum clock in my house. You'll notice the rubber band on the bottom. This is to keep Raven out of there because he stops the clock playing with the pendulum.
During the Spanish Inquisition in the Late Middle Ages, a pendulum device was also used to torture victims before killing them. In place of the bob head usually found on a pendulum, an axe was attached. The victim would be strapped to a table while the axe swung back and forth gradually being lowered until it cleaved the victim’s torso.
In the old days, this was also a method for finding water.