Pierre Jaquet-Droz (1721–1790) was a Swiss-born watchmaker of the late eighteenth century. He lived in Paris, London, and Geneva, where he designed and built animated dolls, or automata, to help his firm sell watches and mechanical birds.
The automata of Jaquet-Droz are also considered to be some of the finest examples of human mechanical problem solving. Three particularly complex, and still working and functional dolls are housed at the art and history museum in Neuchâtel, Switzerland, now known as the Jaquet-Droz automata. Built between 1768 and 1774, the musician, the draughtsman and the writer are considered to be among the remote ancestors of modern computers.
In 1776, his Mechanical Exhibition opened at No. 6, in King Street, Covent-Garden, London, from 12 to 3 o'clock every morning and from 7 to 10 every evening, Sundays excepted.
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