What are hydraulics and how do they work?

The word ‘hydraulics’ originally simply meant ‘water pipes’ (Greek hydor-aulos). It referred to the technology of moving water, or moving things using water, from one place to another. Although most ancient hydraulics were plumbing, powerful engineering applications were soon developed using pumps and waterwheels. The Romans used it extensively to mine lead and gold. Hydraulic power became the electricity of the ancient world.