Ancient Astronomy

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For generations, civilizations have looked to the stars for multiple reasons. Whether it was for navigation, advice, time, or even for religious purposes, the sky has shaped many aspects of humans’ lives, both in the past and the present. Astronomy has always played a significant role in regards to answering so many of the unanswered questions. By closely observing and documenting the movement of the sun, moon and stars, ancient civilizations were able to expand their knowledge and expertise in astronomy, which ultimately resulted in the rise of our modern day civilizations. Through predictions and careful observations, ancient civilizations had an impressive comprehension on the future, and what would come of it. They acknowledged what would…show more content…
He also included a “leap year” to allow his calendar to be closer to the true length of the year. The Egyptians did not stop there, they also invented the sundial, or shadow clock, which founded the twenty four hour long day. Another way they were able to accomplish this was by studying the patterns of the thirty six evenly spaced out stars which they called Decans. These stars would help the stargazers determine which ‘decan’ they were currently in. Each decan consisted of ten days, so they would keep track of which star rose with the sun, and then ten days later, a new decan would begin. Not only were these stars useful for timekeeping, they were also believed to have been powerful deities as well, according to the Egyptians. They viewed the planets as having great power, and thought the same thing with the stars. These decans were also very effective in proving that a day consists of twenty four hours, which is split evenly between day and night. The Egyptians’ method of timekeeping was extremely reliable and accurate. The book, “Echoes of the Ancient Skies” written by Edwin C. Krupp, talks a lot about their impressive calendar. He says, “This calendar kept the moon in tune with the seasons of the sun, Sirius, and the Nile, and that kept Egyptians in touch with the…show more content…
The great pyramids of Egypt are now one of the amazing seven wonders of the world. These pyramids that still stand today shed the light on how life was once lived thousands of years ago. It has been learned that the pyramids were built with the arrangement of the stars and were aligned with those of Orion. The reason behind why these specific stars were the main focus on the pyramid, is because Osiris was known to be the God of death, rebirth, and the afterlife. Their purpose for building these massive structures was to serve as tombs for the deceased pharaohs and queens. In their culture, death was viewed as a new journey into another world, and the pyramids are assumed to have been the passageway to heaven, or to their afterlife. “Death meant no rest for the pharaohs of old kingdom Egypt.” According to prayers that were carved into the stone which made up the pyramids, the pharaoh ascends to the sky among the stars, and “by joining these eternal stars, the pharaoh becomes eternal. The tomb in which he was buried was the point of his departure for the sky,” according to Edwin Krupp. Today, the pyramids are not perfectly lined up with these stars simply due to precession. Over time, the stars slowly shifted their position in the sky, which is why the location of the stars today would not be how they appeared to the ancient Egyptians in

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