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Vending machines of some form or another have been around at least since the 1st century AD, with the first known of such being supposedly made by Hero of Alexandria, a Greek engineer who invented, among many other remarkable machines, one to automatically dispense holy water. (Though it should be noted that many historians think it likely that at least some of Hero’s machines were probably invented by others before and simply documented by Hero.) Whatever the case on this one, as described in The Pneumatics of Hero of Alexandria,
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