Most important tech knowhow time traveler could bring back to Classical/Medieval Era?

Apr 2016
37
Iowa, USA
#1
You have the capability to time travel back to the Classical or Medieval era. What is the most important modern technological/scientific knowledge you would bring back to that time and how would you use it?

Would it be a weapon? Antiseptics? Vehicle? Cooking method? Chemistry knowhow? Or maybe even political/economic theory?

For argument's sake, let's say that once you go back to that time, you are stuck there and have to live out the rest of your life in that era.

Furthermore, for argument's sake, let's say that when you travel back in time, you divorce yourself from your timeline and you create a new timeline (so there is no risk of changing the present time that you came from, and hence no risk of erasing your own existence).

Also, take into account: how much would you risk "rocking the boat"? Your technological knowhow may awe those who witness you and impress local authorities, but in certain times/places they may also get you branded as a witch or a heretic and inflame native superstitions.
 
Last edited:
Apr 2016
37
Iowa, USA
#3
Railways, no question! The biggest game changer by far since the middle ages.
Big one! Do you feel you would have the knowhow to create a functional railroad as well as functional railway vehicles, if you found yourself plopped into the Classical or Medieval world? How would you garner the permission from local landowners and authorities to be permitted to build a railroad?
 
Jun 2015
5,713
UK
#5
pick a kingdom i like, circa 1337, take some antibiotics with me, and tell the king this knowledge, along with a large estate and some serfs to in exchange.....and some weapons too, and some ship building and advanced steel making knowledge to establish colonies in America long before Columbus.
 
Dec 2015
60
NZ
#6
I think the knowhow I'd pick would be germ theory (it might be expressed as demons) and some basic surgery/nursing, such as could be taught to village midwives.

The technology would be the cinchona tree, penicillin and potatoes.
 
Oct 2011
7,654
MARE PACIFICVM
#7
I think the knowhow I'd pick would be germ theory (it might be expressed as demons) and some basic surgery/nursing, such as could be taught to village midwives.

The technology would be the cinchona tree, penicillin and potatoes.
Interesting post. I'm trying to imagine what the world would look like if you introduced germ theory and penicillin sometime during the Middle Ages, especially if it was before 1348 and the Black Death.
 

AlpinLuke

Ad Honoris
Oct 2011
26,201
Italy, Lago Maggiore
#8
I think the knowhow I'd pick would be germ theory (it might be expressed as demons) and some basic surgery/nursing, such as could be taught to village midwives.

The technology would be the cinchona tree, penicillin and potatoes.
Correct, to avoid the effects of the Black Death would change the history of the world.

To do this, I would explain them that to put objects they use in boiling water "set them free from the evil spirits!" [doing this would make them wash in hot water spoons, saucers, glasses, mugs ... but also cloths ...].

The problem would be to give them a technology to produce hot water [so also a heating system] in any season.

Roman made nice water pipes along streets and in homes, so in the Middle Age they would have been able to do the same. I would give them the idea to look for carbon [and I would tell them where to find it!] to build primitive hot water heaters which use coal. To avoid they cut all the European forests ...
 

Similar History Discussions