Bessler portrait04020203

Johann Bessler, also known as Orffyreus.  Invented a gravitymill in 1712.

Books available


The following books are available from my web site at

1) “Perpetual Motion: An Ancient Mystery Solved?” is available in both perfect-bound hard copy and also as a digital PDF file . See the synopsis for details of the book’s contents. Briefly it is an account of everything I could find about Johann Bessler from files held in museums around the world, researched and translated and verified as only the facts.

2) “Apologia Poetica” - this was Bessler’s biography of his life up until the time of Karl the Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel’s patronage. The book contains the original German transcribed into a modern font and includes a full English translation at the rear. I would have preferred to include the original German font but it was in such poor condition that it would have been unreadable. This book contains a number of allusions to secret codes hidden within the book itself.

“3) Das Triumphans” - this was Bessler’s most professionally finished book. It was written in both German and Latin and this edition is a faithful reproduction of the actual pages of the original book. It also includes a full English translation at the rear. A number of drawings are included by the original author and these are said to contain a number of clues as to his machine’s workings.

4) “Grundlicher Bericht” - this was Bessler’s first publication, ostensibly produced by a friend although I think one can detect Bessler’s handiwork in places. This copy is also in the original German and includes a full English translation at the rear. It also includes the very first drawing which Bessler published and this also contains clues at to the way his machine worked.

5) “Maschinen Tractate” - this was found in the Bessler’s possessions after his death, in the form of a number of pages (141) and which contained a message on the front of the volume which stated that he had removed the drawings which depicted how his machine worked but that some one with a penetrating mind could by studying several drawings ultimately discover the secret of its construction. I have reproduced the drawings as they were found.  

Copyright © 2007 John Collins



‘Maschinen Tractate’ was found among Bessler’s possessions after his death. It consists of 141 drawings of apparently failed perpetual motion machines. However a cryptic message written on the front cover informs us that a careful study of more than one drawing will reveal the secret of his wheel’ s construction - this despite the fact that, he says, he has removed those drawings which actually showed the secret.  A full English translation is included.