Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The Astronomy of Lost Civilizations [NOOK Book]

Overview


"It should be read by anyone even remotely interested in the long saga of the universe's profound and lasting influence on mankind’s development." — New Scientist
"A grand book." — Publishers Weekly
"Dr. Krupp teaches us once more to look up at the stars and marvel." — Ray Bradbury
The intriguing world of archaeoastronomy — the study of ancient peoples' observations of the skies and the impact of what they ...

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Echoes of the Ancient Skies: The Astronomy of Lost Civilizations

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Overview


"It should be read by anyone even remotely interested in the long saga of the universe's profound and lasting influence on mankind’s development." — New Scientist
"A grand book." — Publishers Weekly
"Dr. Krupp teaches us once more to look up at the stars and marvel." — Ray Bradbury
The intriguing world of archaeoastronomy — the study of ancient peoples' observations of the skies and the impact of what they saw on their cultural evolution — is the focus of this eminently readable and authoritative survey. Author E. C. Krupp, an astronomer, is the director of the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, California. He is one of the world's greatest experts on archaeoastronomy, and the author of numerous books including Beyond the Blue Horizon (1992) and In Search of Ancient Astronomies (1978). His interpretations of sky-watching customs from around the world range from everyday pursuits such as measuring time and calculating planting seasons to philosophical issues concerning the role of humanity within the larger context of the universe.
Beginning with an explanation of how the sky works and how people have relied upon its guidance for centuries, Dr. Krupp explores ancient and prehistoric observatories, from sites in China and Babylonia to Scotland and Peru. He relates sky god mythology from many cultures, discusses astronomy's influence on funerary rites and other vigils and rituals, and profiles sacred places such as Stonehenge and the kivas of the American Southwest. An extraordinary interdisciplinary work of investigation and discovery, this book offers a compelling portrait of the ancient stargazers, their beliefs, and their customs. 208 illustrations. Bibliography. Index.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780486137643
  • Publisher: Dover Publications
  • Publication date: 2/16/2012
  • Series: Dover Books on Astronomy
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 416
  • File size: 29 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Table of Contents

1. The Lights We See
How the sky works and how we use it: Day and night
Directions
The seasons
The year
Precession
Cycles of planets
Cycles of the moon
The sky symbolism of Osiris
2. The Skies We Watch
"Ancient and prehistoric observatories: "Stretching of the Cord" ceremony (Egypt)"
Bronze age inscriptions in China
Babylonian astronomical tables
"The "Sun Circle" at Cahokia, Illinois"
"Kintraw, Scotland"
Megalithic lunar observatories
Inca skywatchers at Machu Picchu
"The Caracol of Chichén Itzá, Yucatán"
Gnomons in ancient China
3. The Gods We Worship
"Sky gods around the world?why we have them and what they mean: Sun gods, divine planets, and sacred stars"
"Gods of rain, fertility, and storm"
Sacred kingship?the connection between sky and earth
4. The Tales We Tell
"Sky myths and the cycle of cosmic order: Phaëthon, a Greek myth"
"The Pleiades and the opossum (Barasana Indians, Colombia)"
The Omaha Indian myth of the sacred pole
The birth of Huitzilopochtli (Aztec)
The retreat of the sun goddess and her return (Japan)
5. The Dead We Bury
The celestial components of funerals and tombs and the journey of the dead: The Great Pyramid
Royal Tombs of New Kingdom Egypt
The tumulus of China's first emperor and other Chinese tombs
Burial and the city plan of Cahokia
The Temple of the Inscriptions at Palenque (Maya)
Newgrange (prehistoric Ireland)
6. The Vigils We Keep
Shamanism and the celestial travels of the soul: California Indian sun shrines
Mystical star treaders of China
Tukano Indians and their shamans (Colombia)
Medicine wheels of North America
Sun priests in the American Southwest
"Fajada Butte, Chaco Canyon, New Mexico"
7. The Days We Tally
Calendars and the sacred structure of time: Notation and the Ice Age hunters of Europe
Stone rings and the calendar of prehistoric Britain
Namoratunga II and the calendar in ancient Kenya
The three calendars of dynastic Egypt
"Calendars, omens, and kings in China and Babylon"
The Inca calendar and Inca society
Calendar cycles of the Maya and the Aztec
8. The Rituals We Perform
Ceremonies that celebrate the sky: The Hopi Indians and the winter solstice
"The "Burning of Tara" and the Irish Celts"
Imperial ritual in old Beijing
The Inca festival of Inti Raymi
The Babylonian New Year
"Bundling the Years" in ancient Mexico (Aztec)"
"The "Opening of the Mouth" ceremony in ancient Egypt"
9. The Space We Enclose
"Astronomy, geometry, and sacred space: Stonehenge"
Other megalithic rings in England
Scotland's recumbent stone circles
Sarmizegetusa?a Thracian temple
10. The Temples We Align
Astronomical orientation and symbolism in ancient temples: Casa Rinconada and other kivas (American Southwest)
The Skidi Pawnee earth lodge
Kogi temples (Colombia)
"Alta Vista, Monte Albán, Uaxactún, and Uxmal?celestial alignment in ancient Mexico"
Solar sanctuaries of New Kingdom Egypt
11. The Cities We Plan
Sacred capitals and the source of world order: Beijing
Pueblo Bonito
Tenochtitlán
Cuzco
Teotihuacán
12. The Symbols We Draw
How we code the sky and what those messages say about our brains: Mescalero Apache and the four-pointed star
Cross glyphs and pecked crosses from ancient Mexico
"The Aztec "Calendar Stone"
The serpent of equinox sunlight at Chichén Itzá
"Irish rock art, Knowth"
A honeycomb mural from prehistoric Turkey (Çatal Hüyük)
Babylonian boundary stones
Winged suns from Mesopotamia and Egypt
Horizon symbols and astronomical observation
The UFO?a modern sky symbol
13. The Universes We Design
Cosmology and why we do it: The Desana Indian cosmos (Colombia)
The bell-shaped universe of the Warao (Venezuela)
Greek cosmologies
The sky and earth in ancient China
"The heralds of modern cosmology?Copernicus, Kepler, and Newton"
The hierarchical universe of ancient Mexico
Hubble's redshift and the expanding universe
Bibliography
Index
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