New PDF release: A 3405: An Unusual Astronomical Text from Uruk

By Steele J.M.

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Additional info for A 3405: An Unusual Astronomical Text from Uruk

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Why, therefore, does this tablet contain calculations for this earlier period? Furthermore, why does it contain material for all of the planets and for lunar eclipses arranged chronologically? Collections such as this are not attested in any other ACT texts. I think we can discount the possibility that this computed material was gathered together so that it might be compared with the observational record to test the reliability of the astronomical models. The owner and scribe of A 3405 knew of many more ACT planetary schemes than were used in compiling this text, so why should these particular ones have been chosen for comparison?

Rochberg, “The Horoscope of Anu-B¯elˇsunu”, and as text 9 in F. Rochberg, Babylonian Horoscopes. A 3405: An Unusual Astronomical Text from Uruk 135 dividual text written for some particular purpose. Perhaps other texts similar to A 3405 will one day surface, whether it be from the ground or the depths of a museum collection. However, the fact that a text of this type would be compiled from ACT ephemerides would make it in a sense “disposable”. If one were used on a day-by-day basis, for example in compiling horoscopes, then it would be subject to wear and tear, and perhaps it would even eventually be discarded by the owner once it was no longer considered useful, whereas the actual ACT ephemerides may have been only consulted irregularly to compile these texts, and thus remain in a better condition.

Furthermore, why does it contain material for all of the planets and for lunar eclipses arranged chronologically? Collections such as this are not attested in any other ACT texts. I think we can discount the possibility that this computed material was gathered together so that it might be compared with the observational record to test the reliability of the astronomical models. The owner and scribe of A 3405 knew of many more ACT planetary schemes than were used in compiling this text, so why should these particular ones have been chosen for comparison?

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A 3405: An Unusual Astronomical Text from Uruk by Steele J.M.


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