Back in the Present

Today I found myself firmly planted in the present as I was standing in my garden on a golden August afternoon, contemplating all the work which needs to be done.

I live in a small house, in a small grove, surrounded by woodland and nature in general. The wildlife includes black bears, moose, deer, foxes, bobcats, lynx, coyote, raccoons, beaver, otters, muskrats, and the ever present squirrels, chipmunks, mice, voles, frogs, toads, salamanders and snakes. The air is full of birds small and large, including bald eagles, osprey, hawks, ravens, crows, herons and the wee comedians, the hummingbirds.

The small grove is filled with shrubs, flower beds, vegetable plots, gravel paths and bits of lawn. Around the edges can be found patches of wild strawberries, raspberries and blackberries.

Although it was still a beautiful summer day, the quality of the light has changed. The sun no longer rides as high in the sky, and the shadows are lengthening. Soon it will be fall, and the maple tree behind the house will flood the back porch each morning with its lovely orangey red colour.

The countryside, with its valleys and hills, will look glorious then. The fields, like pieces of green velvet, will be surrounded with red, orange, gold and russet trees, shrubs, and bracken. But soon enough the rains and high winds will blow the leaves in great drifts in every nook and cranny of the garden. This is a very busy time for me. A time of gathering. A time to pick the vegetables and berries, and process them for winter, which generally means much blanching of vegetables, jam, jelly and pickle making. Apples will be picked and sliced, and stored in the freezer to make pies and apples sauce during the winter. The gardens must all be cleaned up before the snow comes, and there is still a pile of fire wood to be put under cover, so I won’t freeze during the cold months ahead.

Perhaps it seems odd to be thinking about winter at the end of August, but when it comes, it can come with a vengeance. Then I’ll be staying cozy and warm by the wood stove, reading books and using my computer. Then I’ll be sticking close to home and digging into ancient history once again, but for the moment I must attend to my chores for a while, so I hope that you will understand that I will not be posting anything new for a bit, because it will be work, work, work from morning till night. By the end of the day I’m usually just too tired to concentrate on ancient history, or anything else for that matter.

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Correction to the Stonehenge Calendar

Grandfather Wolf has struck me in the head with his lightning stick today. Wake up old girl! You’ve made an error in the calendar at Stonehenge. I am posting it here so that anyone who has already seen it will know about this error and correction. I’ll also edit my original post, so that it will be corrected.

The whole problem stems from my thinking, Sumerian calendar, and that 11.25 minutes which add up to one day in 128 years. Oddly enough this 128 years is a coincidence, because it still belongs to the calendar at Stonehenge, just in a different way. I was reading Secrets of the Great Pyramid by Peter Tompkins, when I came across the following:

” The present calendar derives from the early Romans, who had a ten month year of 334 days, hence our September, October, November, December. In the 7th century B.C. Numa Pompillus is credited with adding January and February for a lunar year of 354 days. The shortage of 11 1/4 days caused the seasons and the calendar to diverge to the point where Julius Caesar was obliged to add 91 days to 46 B.C. and succumb to the suggestion of Cleopatra that he adopt the Egyptian civil calendar of 365.25 days. Even so, the difference between the civil calendar and the actual solar year of 365.2422 days added up to an extra day every 128 years, which obliged Pope Gregory XIII to drop 10 days from 1582.”

This means that at Stonehenge, leap year was missed every 128 years. Instead of adding two days, as I said in my original piece, you would add no days at all. So that cycle of 72 and 128 years still stands except for this one detail. It also means that the people at Stonehenge were keeping a more accurate calendar than either the Egyptians or the Sumerians in 3154 BCE. What makes me think this is correct, is the way the Aubrey hole circle is set up.

The red dots are the Station stones. They were not used to count with, only the Aubrey holes and the spaces in between. The days were counted counter clock wise on the spaces, the years counted clockwise on the Aubrey holes. The green dots are the 10, 9, 9 year counts connected to the eclipses. Counting from Aubrey hole 1, all the way around the circle and on to Aubrey hole 16, will give 72 years. If you count around the circle again and  back to 16, you have counted 128 years. 72 + 56 = 128 The second cycle of 72 and 128 years, starts at Aubrey hole 29 and ends at 44 for 72 years. Go around once more, and you have 128 years. Aubrey holes 16 and 44 are marked by the blue dots. This was the best way to keep track of these two cycles.  After the first 72 years, you would need to start a new 72 year cycle because the first counter would be busy continuing on until it reached 128 years.  The 72 year period had to do with Precession of the Equinoxes, and the 128 years with that missed leap year. 72 years also figured in the orbits of Venus and Jupiter as explained in the original piece.

The people who designed this were very efficient. Everything would have worked smooth as clockwork. These were all important cycles in their calendar. The mounds and ditches around the two Station stones were put there to help the counters know where they were in their count. The eclipse cycle count fell on the opposite side of the Station stones from the 72 and 128 year cycles.

I have also been reading The White Goddess by Robert Graves. He has many mistakes in that book and apparently admitted to making up the tree alphabet calendar. But one of the things he said may in fact be correct. He said that the ancient Celts had a calendar which had 13 periods of 28 days each, and that the year was 364 days plus 1 day. There are many stories which mention a year and a day, he thought this came from their calendar keeping. The year was 364 days, plus 1 day. When a year is counted on the Aubrey hole circle, you have to go around the circle six and a half times. This gives 364 days or 13 periods of 28 days each. One more day had to be waited for before the year was finished. The calendar at Stonehenge certainly connects to what he said, so I think that was correct. This is the original ancient Celtic calendar, likely home-grown, after all, they had some 4000 years to sort out the astronomy there. Those first posts on the Equinox line were put there 4000 years before the Aubrey hole circle was built. They had it all sorted out, by that time.

References

Secrets of the Great Pyramid by Peter Tompkins

The White Goddess by Robert Graves

Following the White Trail to Stonehenge Part II

Pictures

Grandfather Wolf and His Lightning Stick by Susan Seddon Boulet

Ground plan of Stonehenge, Ancient Monuments Branch, Ministry of Public Buildings and Works, England