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(1,075 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] A. In Superstition Eclipses disturbed the usual regularity of day and night and frighten…

Balbillus (Barbillus)

(154 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] Claudius Balbillus, Tiberius. Praefectus Aegypti AD 55-59; games were held in Ephesus after 70 (Βαλβιλλεῖα; Balbilleîa) in his honour. Sen. Q Nat. 4,2,13 praises his erudition, therefore identified by Cichorius i.a. [2; 3; 9. 39] against [10] with the son of Thrasyllus, the astrologer of emperors Claudius (he comes to him in 41 as envoy of the Alexandrians to Rome), Nero and Vespasianus. His writings, addressed to a certain Hermogenes, were called Ἀστρολογούμενα ( Astrologoúmena). Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) Bibliography Fragments : 1 F. Cumont, CCAG VIII 4, 23…


(496 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (πλειάδης/ pleiádēs, Latin pliades, also Βότρυς/ Bótrys, 'bunch of grapes' or 'curl'; Latin


(382 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Οἰνοπίδης; Oinopídēs) of Chios. Astronomer and mathematician in the 2nd half of the 5th cent. BC. According to Procl. (In primum Euclidis Elementorum librum commentarii, p. 65,21), O. was only a little younger than Anaxagoras [2]. Diog. Laert. 9,41 records that O. was mentioned by Democritus [1]. According to Diod. Sic. 1,98,3, O. was trained by Egyptian priests. His cosmological theory of two elements (fire and earth), was in accordance with the Pythagoreans (Aristot. Mete. 1,8,3…


(716 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
(ζώνη/ zṓnē, 'belt'). [German version] [1] see Belts II See Belts II. Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) [German version] [2] Astronomic-mathematical term Metaphor in astronomy and mathematical geography, first attested by Autolycus [3] of Pitane c. 310 BC; a Latin translation of the term, despite many attempts ( cingulum, fascia, plaga, etc), did not establish itself. The term can also describe the Zodiac, …


(252 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (παρανατέλλοντα; paranatéllonta), stars 'rising alongside' (or συνανατέλλοντα/ synanatéllonta, 'rising simu…


(1,090 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (ἐκλειπτική sc. γραμμή, cf. schol. Arat. 550, p. 323,8 Martin: τὴν μέσην γραμμὴν τοῦ ζῳδιακοῦ; and ThlL V,2, 48,56 ecliptica linea, but mostly ἐκλειπτικὸς sc. κύκλος). One of the five fixed celestial orbits (  kýkloi ), limited by the two tropics and intersecting the equator, i.e. an oblique orbit (λοξός, loxós


(191 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Κλεόστρατος; Kleóstratos) of Tenedus, astronomer, probably at the end of the 6th cent. BC, according to Theophr. De signis 4, he made his observations from the Ida mountain range. His work, of which two hexameters have been handed down, is called in the Vita Arati (Commentariorum in Aratum reliquiae 324.10 Maass) Φαινόμενα ( Phainómena) -- but there is no account in the differing catalogue of Achilleus (ibid. 79.2-6) --, in Ath. 7.278b Ἀστρολογία ( Astrología; handed down as gastrologia). According to Plin. HN 2.31, C. was the first to name the zodiacal s…


(254 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (κύκλοι; kýkloi, Latin cycli). The eleven celestial orbits (cf. Eudoxus fr. 62-69; Arat. 469-558; Geminus Astronomicus 5; Hyg. Poet. Astr. 4,1-10; Manil. 1,561-804; Achilles Astronomus, Isagoge 22-27), which are divided up according to various points of view. The only visible ‘orbit’ is the ‘oblique’ Milky Way, all others are invisible and probably of mnemotechnical origin. Parallel to the celestial equator run the northern and southern tropic and polar orbit, respectively. These five parallel orbits are reflected on the earth and mark the boundaries of their five zones. The ‘oblique’ zodiac ( Ecliptic) cuts the equator at the equinoxes and its boundary is marked in the north and south by the tropics ( Seasons). Perpendicular to the zodiac stand the two colures (‘mutilated’, because the southern polar calotte was invisible), which link the four equinoxes with the two poles: the equinoctial and the solstitial colure. The nine orbits thus far mentioned…


(103 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Κιδήνας; Kidḗnas, Babylonian Kidinnu), Chaldean astronomer, at the latest in the 2nd cent. BC, mentioned by Strabo as well as Sudines and Naburianus, discoverer of the equation 251 synodic months = 269 anomalistic months, originator of system B of the Babylonian moon calendar. His observations were probably used by  Critodemus (CCAG 5,2,128,15),  Hipparchus [6] and  Ptolemaeus.…


(267 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Ῥητόριος; Rhētórios). R. was the last Greek-writing expert on astrology in Egypt before the Arab conquest in AD 640, . He played an important role in the transmission of older theories to the Middle Ages. His work, which has been preserved in…


(325 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
(Κριτόδημος; Kritódēmos) [No German version] [1] Astrologer of the Hellenistic period Astrologer of the Helleni…


(3,362 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
A. Antiquity to Renaissance A.1. IntroductionAntiquity and the Renaissance were high water marks in the history of A. The cosmological worldview, associated with Graeco-Roman polytheism, was in both periods regarded as a form of surrogate religion. While Christian rulers in the West for the most part condemned A. as heresy and only occasionally engaged with it …
Date: 2016-11-24


(203 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (ἡμισφαίριον; hēmisphaírion). The term refers to a ‘hemisphere’ a) in stereometry as a geometrical body, b) in astronomical cosmology as half a celestial sphere on both sides of one of the large celestial circles ( Kykloi), mostly of the horizon, i.e. outwards from the…

Weather portents and signs

(634 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (ἐπισημασίαι/ episēmasíai, διοσημεῖαι/ diosēmeîai, also σημεῖα/ sēmeîa; Latin signa). The term is used in two ways: to designate a portent of a particular weather phenomenon to be expected, or to refer to a sign expressed by the current weather. The oldest weather forecasts were assembled by the Babylonians on the basis of precise observations (Assurbanipal; Divination; Meteorology), and were often linked with astrological prophecies [6; 7] (Astrology), sometimes compiled in menologies (prophecies by the phase of the moon; cf. calendar [B 2]). The systematic st…


(447 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Ὑάδες/ Hyádes; Hyas only since Statius, otherwise Suculae, according to Plin. HN 18,247, the popular name is sidus Parilicium). Constellation in the head of Taurus, found - due to the fact that Taurus rises in reverse - at the end of the sign in the neighbourhood of Orion and the  Pleiades (the H. are mentioned along with the latter as early as Hom. Il. 18,486 on the shield of Achilles). Their name is derived from ὗς ( hŷs; ‘pig’; ‘piglet’) or from ὕειν ( hýein; ‘to rain’; ‘rain sign’) or from the shape of the letter Υ as an image of a bull's head. The number of…


(372 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] Author of an astronomical teaching manual, who lived between  Poseidonius and  Ptolemy (whom he does not quote). The textbook consisted of two parts designated scholia (‘lectures’, ‘exercises’). The title Κυκλικῆς θεωρίας μετεώρων α'/β' (


(49 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Τιμόχαρις; Timócharis). Greek astronomer from the time of Ptolemaeus [1] I (around 300 BC), whose observations were used…


(298 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] from Athens. Astronomer, meteorologist and geographer, is named together with  Meton as the discoverer of the 19-year lunisolar cycle. Together they observed, in the last third of the 5th cent. BC, solstices and equinoxes, the anomaly of solar movements and the length of the solar year, also the rising and setting of the planets ‘in Athens, on the Cyclades, in Macedonia and in Thrace’ (Ptol. Phaseis p. 67,6 Heiberg, cf. Anon. a. 379 CCAG V 1 [1904] p. 205,6 ἐν Ἀθήναις ( en Athḗnais) and Avienus Ora maritima 350 Atheniensis or 337 Amphipolis urbis incola). In Athens E. obse…


(214 words)

Larginus Proculus

(64 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Πρόκλος; Próklos) is said, according to Cass. Dio 67,16,2, to have foretold the death of Domitian in Germania; he was condemned in Rome but saved after Domitian had actually been murdered on the predicted day, and was richly rewarded by Nerva.…


(176 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (ἀνάλημμα; análēmma)‘Recording’, ‘outline’, general: geometric or arithmetic method for determining the height of an object by measuring the angle; especially: projection of the heights of the sun with the help of a line network on the horizontal level of sundials with uneven length of hours, …


(160 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] …


(216 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (παρανατέλλοντα), “daneben aufgehende” (oder συνανατέλλοντα/ synanatéllonta, “gleichzeitig aufgehende”) Sterne, sind Sternbilder, Teile von solchen (auch de…


(282 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] aus Athen. Astronom, Meteorologe und Geograph, wird zusammen mit Meton als Entdecker des 19jährigen lunisolaren Zyklus gen. Er beobachtete im letzten Drittel des 5. Jh. v.Chr. zusammen mit diesem die Sonnenwenden und die anderen Jahrpunkte, die Anomalie der Sonnenbewegung sowie die Länge des Sonnenjahres, ferner die Auf- und Untergänge der Fixsterne, und zwar ‘in Athen, auf den Kykladen, in Makedonien und in Thrakien’ (Ptol. Phaseis p. 67,6 Heiberg, vgl. Anon. a. 379 CCAG V 1 [1904] p. 205,6 ἐν Ἀθήναις und Avienus ora maritima 350 Atheniensis bzw. 337 Amphipolis ur…


(328 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] Astronomischer Schulschriftsteller zeitlich zw. Poseidonios und Ptolemaios (den er nicht zit.), schrieb ein Lehrbuch in zwei B., die 2,7,229 als σχολαί (‘Vorlesungen, ‘Übungen) bezeichnet werden. Der hsl. überl. Titel Κυκλικῆς θεωρίας μετεώρων α'/β' (


(987 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (ἐκλειπτική sc. γραμμή, vgl. schol. Arat. 550, p. 323,8 Martin: τὴν μέσην γραμμὴν τοῦ ζῳδιακοῦ; und ThlL V,2, 48,56 ecliptica linea, meist jedoch ἐκλειπτικὸς sc. κύκλος). Einer der fünf unbeweglichen Himmelskreise ( kýkloi ), begrenzt durch die beiden Wendekreise und den Äquator schneidend, ein schiefer Kreis (λοξός, loxós), dessen Sterne also nicht am selben Punkt auf- und untergehen; bezeichnete urspr. die Bahn der Sonne während ihres Jahres. Der Name rührt daher, daß auf dieser Bahn die Finsternisse stattfinden (Ach. Tat. …


(394 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (Ὑάδες, erst seit Statius Hyas, sonst Suculae, nach Plin. nat. 18,247 volkstümlich sidus Parilicium). Sternbild im Kopf des Stieres, welcher sich, weil der Stier umgekehrt aufgeht, am Ende des Zeichens befindet, in der Nachbarschaft des Orion und der Pleiaden (neben diesen werden die H. schon bei Hom. Il. 18,486 auf dem Schild des Achilleus erwähnt). Ihr Name wird abgeleitet von ὗς (


(927 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] A. Im Aberglauben F. stören die gewohnte Regelmäßigkeit von Tag und Nacht und erschreckten die Menschen, solange sie die Phänomene nicht erklären konnten. In früher Zeit glaubte man, die Gestirne litten durch die Macht von Dämonen, und versuchte, das Leiden durch Erzklang oder lautes Geschrei zu beenden. Andererseits sollen thessal. Hexen den Mond durch magische Praktiken auf die Erde herabgezwungen haben (Plat. Gorg. 513a, Hor. epod. 5,46; 17,77, Verg. ecl. 8,69, Ov. met. 7,207f.).…


(170 words)


(333 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (Οἰνοπίδης) von Chios. Astronom und Geometer in der 2. H. des 5. Jh.v.Chr., laut Proklos (in Eukl. elem., p. 65,21) nur wenig jünger als Anaxagoras [2], nach Diog. Laert. 9,41 von Demokritos [1] erwähnt. O. soll laut Diod. 1,98,3 von ägypt. Priestern ausgebildet worden sein und stand mit seiner kosmologischen Theorie von zwei Elementen (Feuer und Erde) den Pythagoreern nahe (Aristot. meteor. 1,8,345a 13f.). Er erklärte die Milchstraße myth. als den früheren Weg des Helios, der si…


(167 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (ἡμισφαίριον). Der Begriff bezeichnet eine “Halbkugel” a) in der Stereometrie als geometrischer Körper, b) in der astronomischen Kosmologie als halbe Himmelskugel beiderseits eines der großen Himmelskreise (Kykloi), meistens des Horizonts, also von der zentral gedachten Erde aus die o…


(152 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] “Aufnahme”, “Abriß”, allgemein: geometrisches oder arithmetisches Verfahren zur Bestimmung der Höhe eines Gegenstandes durch Winkelmessung; speziell: Projektion der Sonnenhöhen mit Hilfe eines Liniennetzes auf die horizontale Ebene von Sonnenuhren mit ungleicher Stundenlänge, abhängig von der geographischer Breite. Grundlage …

Larginus Proculus

(56 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (Πρόκλος) soll nach Cass. Dio 67,16,2 in Germanien den Tod Domitians vorausgesagt haben; er wurde in Rom verurteilt, aber gerettet, nachdem Domitian tatsächlich am vorausgesagten Tage ermordet worden war, und von Nerva reich belohnt. Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) Bibliography W. und H.G. Gundel, Astrologumena, 1966, 177  A. Stein, s.v. L., RE 12, 834f.

Balbillus (Barbillus)

(149 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] Claudius Balbillus, Ti. Praefectus Aegypti 55-59 n.Chr.; zu seinen Ehren wurden in Ephesos nach 70 Spiele (Βαλβιλλεῖα) abgehalten. Sen. nat. 4,2,13 rühmt seine Gelehrsamkeit, daher von Cichorius u.a. [2; 3; 9. 39] gegen [10] mit de…


(447 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (πλειάδης/ pleiádēs, lat. pliades, auch Βότρυς/ Bótrys, “Traube” oder “Locke”; lat. Vergiliae, “Zweiglein”). Im Gegensatz zu den Hyaden schon früh seit Euripides und Hippokrates im kollektiven Singular Πλειάς/ Pleiás: sieben dicht beieinanderstehende schwache, als “Nebel” bezeichnete Sterne, nach Nikandros [4] am Schwanz des umgekehrt aufgehenden Stiers, sonst - weil dieser nur mit dem Vorderteil verstirnt ist - am Anf. seines Sektors. Schon Hom. Il. 18,486 und Od. 5,272 erwähnen sie jeweils an erster Stelle, Hes. erg. 383 bezeichnet sie als Töchter des Atlas [2] und der Pleione, nach Arat. 262f. heißen sie Alkyone, Merope, Kelaino, Elektra, Sterope, Taygete und Maia. Eine unter den P. leuchtet nur schwach: entweder Merope aus Scham, sich als einzige mit einem Sterblichen, Sisyphos, vermählt zu haben, oder Elektra aus Trauer über den Untergang der von ihrem Sohn Dardanos [1] gegründeten Stadt Troia. Nach Kall. fr. 693 gelten sie als Töchter der Amazonenkönigin und heißen Kokkymo, Glaukia, …


(95 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (Κιδήνας, babylon. Kidinnu), chaldäischer Astronom, spätestens im 2. Jh.v.Chr., von Strabon neben Sudines und Naburianus gen., Entdecker der Gleichung 251 synodische Monate = 269 anomalistische Monate, Urheber des Systems B der babylon. Mondrechnung. Seine Beobachtungen wurden wahrscheinlich von Kritodemos (CCAG 5,2,128,15), Hipparchos [6] und Ptolemaios benutzt. Astronomie Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) Bibliography …


(262 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (Ῥητόριος). Der letzte griech. schreibende astrologische Fachschriftsteller in Äg. vor der Eroberung durch die Araber 640 n. Chr. Rh. war ein wichtiger Vermittler älterer Lehren an das MA. Sein Werk, von dem - verm. noch nicht einmal vollständige - Zusammenfassungen in 90 bzw. 117 Kap. existieren, schöpft bes. aus Antiochos [23] und Teukros von Babylon, ferner aus Klaudios Ptolemaios [65], Vettius Valens, Iulianos [19] von Laodikeia und Olympiodoros' [4] Komm. zu Paulos [2] aus A…


(175 words)


(209 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[English version] (κύκλοι, lat. cycli). Die elf Himmelskreise (vgl. Eudoxos fr. 62-69; Arat. 469-558; Geminus Astronomicus 5; Hyg. astr. 4,1-10; Manil. 1,561-804; Achilleus Astronomus, Isagoge 22-27), die nach verschiedenen Gesichtspunkten eingeteilt werden. Der einzig sichtbare “Kreis” ist die “schiefe” Milchstraße, alle anderen sind unsichtbar…


(2,459 words)

Author(s): Hunger, Hermann (Vienna) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient In Mesopotamia, the visible stars were combined into constellations; some of these notions about constellat…


(736 words)

Author(s): Krauss, Rolf (Berlin) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] [1] Egyptian priest and Greek writer According to uncertain sources, M. (see [1]) was a priest from Sebennytus, who lived under Ptolemy I and II and played a part in the introduction of the cult of Sarapis ( Sarapis) [2]. As a Hellenized Egyptian, he wrote in Greek about Egyptian topics. A number of isolated quotations have survived from a maximum of eight works, among them a work regarding the preparation of kyphi (incense), further a hierá bíblos about Egyptian religion, as well as a book about rituals. The question of the works' authenticity remains uns…


(640 words)

Author(s): Engels, Johannes (Cologne) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
(Κάλλιππος; Kállippos). [German version] [1] Athenian stu…

Milky Way

(568 words)

Author(s): Hunger, Hermann (Vienna) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient The expression for the MW in ancient Mesopotamia has not yet been discovered. However, it is possible that it referred to milk; in hymnal texts, the stars were described as the ‘cattle herds of the Moon deities’. In Egypt, too, the MW was perceived as a phenomenon; its designation is still discussed in modern scholarship [2].…

Fixed stars

(1,142 words)

Author(s): Hunger, Hermann (Vienna) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient Sumerian and Akkadian languages do not distinguish between fixed stars and planets: for both MUL or


(381 words)

Author(s): Hunger, Hermann (Vienna) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient Currently 32 horoscopes are known from Babylonia from the period 410 to 69 BC. They mostly begin with the date on which a child was born. This is followed by the positions of the moon, sun and planets in the sequence Jupiter, Venus, Mercury, Saturn, Mars. The positions are given relative to the signs of the zodiac, and sometimes the degree within a sign. Sometimes this is followed by further astronomical phenomen…


(376 words)

Author(s): Robbins, Emmet (Toronto) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
(Λάσος; Lásos). [German version] [1] L. of Hermione Poet, c. 500 BC in the Argolis (incorrectly in the Suda: Achaia). The Suda places his date of birth in the 58th Oympiad. (548-544 BC). Like Anacreon and Simonides, this Greek poet was under the patronage of Hipparchus in Athens. According to Hdt. 7,6, Onomacritus was expelled by Hipparchus when L. caught him forging oracles of Musaeus. The Schol. Aristoph. Av. 1403 quotes…


(1,454 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) | Hunger, Hermann (Vienna)
(ἀστρολογία; astrología). [German version] A. Term Astrology is the original and more natural name for the study of the heavens in general; until well into late antiquity it was not strictly demarcated from its rival word astronomía, which is closely linked to the Platonic school [24]. According to current understanding astrology is concerned with forecasts according to a specific position of the stars and, according to the mythical way of thinking, has available for this a comprehensive categorization system of space and time [10]. Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) [German version] B. Ancient Orient Astrology in the Ancient Orient is based principally on omens derived from celestial phenomena. This does not mean the effects of the stars on people, but announcement of future events by signs given by the gods. In the first half of the 2nd millennium BC, astronomical omens principally from lunar phenomena are attested not only in Mesopotamia, but also in Elam, Syria and in the Hittite kingdom [1. 32]. The astrological omens were extended in Mesopotamia into an extensive collection, called after its opening words Enūm…
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