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- Comparitive Astronomy of KEMET -
ANCIENT EGYPT

Last Updated 27/01/02: Richard Grosser: cadre@xtra.co.nz
Best viewed on a MAC with Die Nasty, CType AOE, Glyph Basic & GlyphExt Fonts

|Keys|Definitions|Sopdet|Equinoxes|Akhet|References|
 

Senmut Ceiling: North Panel
Fig. 1 Tomb of Senmut: Ceiling, Del el-Bahri, Kemet.  c. 1470 BC
Painting to northern-half section.
Top: Horus [the consort of Hathor], is shown in a gesture of spearing the bull Isis-Hathor, with the tip of the tail is Sopdet [Sirius]
denoting the commencement point of the annual cycle of feast and jubilee days.
Below: Presumed appearance of 13  God's depicting eclipsed Lunar Mansions.
Led by the constellation of with Taweret [Draco] at the head, situated at the North Celstial Pole
[see inset: Pre-eclipse of 1553: Thebes © Richard Grosser 2002].
 
 


Fig. 2 Temple of Hathor, Zodiac Ceiling, Dendera, Kemet.  c. 51 BC
Painted bas-relief.  Original now in the Louvre Museum, Paris, France. From The Road to Quena, with thanks.
The Greek influence in the refined style of relief execution is paramount. Although, the roots of the Akkadian influencein the formation of
the 12 signs of Zodiac, surrounding 36 Decans and supported by 12 Solar Months are in evidence.
Note the axial marker at lower centre which is 18º to the north-south axis,
marking the helical rising of Sopdet (Sirius),between Canis Major on the left and Orion on the right.
 
 


- KEYS -


Fig. 3 Numbers in Ancient Egypt. Tables are Roman , Hieroglyphic and Hieratic equivalents.
 


Fig. 4 Phonetic symbols from Ancient Egypt. Tabled are equivalents fom Hieroglyphs, Hieratic, Demotic and English.

Tables in the above figures  from:
Dersin, D. (ed.). (1997). What Life was Like on the Banks of the Nile: Egypt  3050 - 30 BC,
Time-Life Books, Alexandria, US.



 

= SOPDET Studies =
Corrected for the precession of the Equinoxes
 


Fig. 5 Relief block from Amarna: The window of appearances at the Royal Palace.
18th Dynasty. c. 1348 - 1335 BC. Limestone.  Boston, MFA.
This window had a dual purpose from which the 'Glory of the Aten' (Pharaoh) is observed and observations were made, of the Aten (Sun).

 
Definitions:
The equinoxes. As the sun progresses eastward along the ecliptic, it crosses the celestial equator moving northward at the vernal equinox (spring [nothern hemisphere]) and again six months later moving southward  at the autumnal equinox (fall[nothern hemisphere]).  By definition, the right ascension - declination of the vernal equinox is (0h, 0º).
- Zeilik, M. & E. v. P. Smith. (1987). Introductory Astronomy & Astrophysics.
Saunders College Publishing, PA, US. p. 483
 

Sirius.  Of all the stars in the night sky, none can rival the glory of Sirius.  It is three-quarters of a magnitude brighter than it's nearest rival, Canopus and alost a magnitude and a half brighter than Arcturus, the most brilliant star in the northern hemisphere of the sky.  It is the leader of Canis Major. the Great Dog, part of Orion's retinue, and not unnaturally it is called the Dog-Star. ... There is never any problem finding Sirius, because it is so bright, but in case of any doubt, follow through the line of the three stars of Orion's Belt.  Of course there are times in the year when when the stars in this area are too near the Sun to be seen, but Sirius is prominent for several months in every year.

- Moore, P. (1997). Brilliant Stars.
Ted Smart, Auckland, NZ. p. 19


 


:  :    TIME : B.C.    :  :


Animations:
- PLACE : Mallawi, near ancient Akhetaten (27º 44' N)  [YYYY MM DD] -

Solar Eclipses near the Sopdet Festival during the reign of Akhenaten

Solar Eclipse at Akhetaten
Fig. 6 View from the site of Akhetaten looking towards the West, on the evening of the 14th July, 1341 BC.
[The animations are being relocated as of 1st February, 2002]

|1341 07 14|
|1342 07 26|
|1347 07 21|
|1349 07 12|
|1350 07 24|

Viewed from  the site of Akhetaten fixed on the eclipsing Sun, rising and setting, adjacent to the annual helical rising of Sirus,
foreshadowing the innundation of the Nile Valley.  Seen from the East in the Amarna mountains to across the plains of the Nile Valley in the West.
The rising and setting Sun displays the relative twilight effect from Earth's atmosphere.  Sirius [although not seen in the frame] has risen before it.
Made with Starry Night Backyard 3.1 (SPACE.com).  © Richard Grosser 2002.





Images:

|1348|

-  PLACE : Mallawi, near ancient Akhetaten (27º 44' N) -


Fig. 7 View from the site of Akhetaten looking towards the East, towards the surrounding mountains of Amarna.
The rising Sun is displaying the relative twilight effect from Earth's atmosphere.  Sirius is seen rising before it.
The precession epoch is displayed in red.  Made with Voyager 2 (Carina Software).  © Richard Grosser 2002.
 



:  :    TIME : A.D.    :  :
 

|2002|

-  PLACE : Giza (30º 00' N)  -


Fig. 8 View from Giza looking towards the East, across the Nile Valley.
The rising Sun is displaying the relative twilight effect from Earth's atmosphere.  Sirius is seen to the right-hand side rising before the Sun.
Elevation: 3m. Made with Starry Night  Backyard 3.1 (SPACE.com) and linked to a parallel Redshift 2 view.
In the following images for the 30th July & 3rd August, the precession epoch is displayed in red.
Made with Voyager 2  by Carina Software.  © Richard Grosser 2002.
 

|020730| * |020803|
 


= Eclipse Studies =
Corrected for the precession of the Equinoxes
 

:  :    TIME : B.C.    :  :
 

|1355|

-  PLACE : Luxor, at ancient Thebes (25º 41' N)  -


Fig. 9 View from  Thebes looking South-East across the Nile Valley.
The rising Sun is slowly being eclipsed by the Moon.  Daylight obscuring any stars.
Elevation: 3m. Made with Starry Night Backyard 3.1 (SPACE.com).  © Richard Grosser 2002.
 


= REFERENCES =


Fig. 10 Akhenaten Standing with an offering tablet:
Amarna Period, 18th Dynasty,
Limestone, Egyptian Museum, Cairo.

BOOKS:

Dersin, D. (ed.). (1997). What Life was Like on the Banks of the Nile: Egypt  3050 - 30 BC,
Time-Life Books, Alexandria, US.

Moore, P. (1997). Brilliant Stars.
Ted Smart, Auckland, NZ.

Rowan-Robinson, M. (1990). Universe,
Longman Group, Essex, UK.

Stierlin, H. (1995). Pharaohs: Master-Builders.
Terrail, Paris, France.

Wildung, T. (1997). Egypt: From Prehistory to the Romans.
Benedikt Taschen Verlag GmbH, Köln, Germany.

Zeilik, M. & E. v. P. Smith. (1987). Introductory Astronomy & Astrophysics.
Saunders College Publishing, PA, US.


URL's:
Egyptian Cosmology: http://eclipse-chasers.com/akhet.html
The Tel Amarna Tablets: http://www.mystae.com/restricted/streams/thera/amarna.html
The Centre for Archaeoastronomy: http://www.wam.umd.edu/%7Etlaloc/archastro/
Voyager II from Carina Software: http://www.carinasoft.com/

 

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