Salomon Idler

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Salomon Idler (11 February 1610 in Cannstatt – probably 1669 in Augsburg) was a German shoemaker, who is best known for his attempt to become an aviation pioneer.


Idler was a shoemaker in Augsburg, who also had several other interests. He was also known as a poet and actor. He was married two times.[1]

Idler dreamed of flying, and constructed a set of wings that he would ride while hanging suspended from his arms.[2] He made one attempt at flying, originally planning on launching himself from the Perlachturm, a 70-meter tower in the center of Augsburg, but the clergyman was able to convince him to start at a lower level. In the attempt he was unable to control his descent, and fell onto a bridge. He survived, but four chickens under the bridge were killed when it collapsed.

After his abortive attempt, Idler became known as "der fliegende Schuster" (the flying Shoemaker). A street near the University of Augsburg is named after him.[3]

Idler's attempt is fictionalized in the novel Der Teufelsvogel des Solomon Idler (Solomon Idler's Satanic Bird) by Peter Dempf (ISBN 3821803886, 2000).


  1. ^ The record of his second marriage lists Elias Holl as Idler's wedding guarantor, according to the German-language version of Wikipedia.
  2. ^ We do not have details of the design, since he burned the machine after his failed attempt.
  3. ^ [1] website