Displays of status and technological achievement were not limited to the Kunstkammer. Noble dynasties commissioned some marvels primarily to amuse attendees at courtly banquets, festivals, tournaments, and weddings, where they were incorporated into the dining setting in order to kindle lively discussion. The most marvelous of these technologies were automata, mechanized figures based on the same self-moving gear systems that powered clocks. Princes collected automata avidly, and brought them out of the Kunstkammer to delight guests by setting them in motion across the table.
Metropolitan Museum of Art