Etymology of the word ‘Robot’

You will never get bored when you ponder on something which you like the most. Am I right? Yes, now we are going back to history without the help of time machine to find out how the word Robot came into existence.

In the ancient period, robots were playing a vital role only in science fiction stories. In 1817, Mark Shelley, a novel writer, wrote a story named ‘Frankenstein’ in which there was a character looking like a humanoid monster. There are many instances similar to it where robots were used in stories without using the name Robot.

In the year 1920, Robot gets its name for the first time from a Czechoslovakian drama director Karel Capek. Are you excited to know how it happened?

Karel Capek had a machine man character in his film and he was not interested to name it as others did. So, he decided to give it a new name and started to search the dictionary of his own language ‘Czech.’ He found a word called “Robota” which means slave or forced labour. He strikes out the final letter ‘a’ from ‘Robota’ and coins the word ‘Robot’ for his machine man characters. Later, he named his drama as Rossum’s Universal Robots (R.U.R).


A pic from the drama ‘Rossum’s Universal Robots’

Somehow the name ‘Robot’ started to spread and gets into the movies for the first time in 1927. In this movie, Maschinenmensch Gyroid Humanoid Robots were used, and it created a huge impact for the name. Apart from all these instances, the word ‘Robot’ became more popular after Isaac Asimov, a science-fiction writer, illustrated the Three Laws of Robotics in his story on 1942.

isaac asimov

Isaac Asimov

Robots were dominating in science fiction stories and movies only till 1950, and it was a dream for many scientists to bring robot live to this earth. It actually happened and introduction of robots in the various fields has turned the world to a modern era.

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Author: JAY

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