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Zone

(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, which crosses the sphere of the heavens diagonally, but it usually designates the bands, delimited by celestial circles ( Kýkloi ) running parallel to the …

Paranatellonta

(252 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (παρανατέλλοντα; paranatéllonta), stars 'rising alongside' (or συνανατέλλοντα/ synanatéllonta, 'rising simultaneously') are constellations, parts thereof (also of the signs of the zodiac) or especially bright individual stars, which become visible or invisible at the same time as certain degrees or decanal sections (segments of 10 degrees) of the ecliptic. They were first described by Aratus [4] who was criticized by Hipparchus [6]. In antiquity, they were used for determining the season…

Ecliptic

(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) whose stars do not rise and set at the same point; it originally referred to the orbit of the sun during its year. The name is derived from the fact that the  eclipses take place on this orbit (Ach.Tat. Isagoga 23, p. 53,…

Timocharis

(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 by Ptolemaeus [65] in his Sýntaxis (7,2 p. 12,24); cited six times by Proclus [2] in his Hypotýpōsis. Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) Bibliography W. Kroll, s. v. T., RE 6 A, 1258 f.

Euctemon

(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…

Nechepso

(214 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (Νεχεψῶ; Nechepsȏ). N. and Petosiris (Πετόσιρις; Petósiris),are often referred to together as ‘the ancient Egyptians’ with N. on his own as ‘the king; ’they are the pseudonyms of the authors of a reference book on astrology written around 150-120 BC. Entitled Ἀστρολογούμενα ( Astrologoúmena) and couched in a veil of mystical terminology supposedly in iambic senarii, it contained all the important teachings on Hellenistic astrology at that early date. It is possible that there was only one single author, that is to say, the…

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. Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) Bibliography W. and H. G. Gundel, Astrologumena, 1966, 177 A. Stein, s.v. L., RE 12, 834f.

Analemma

(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, depending on the geographical latitude. The principle is based on the length ratio of a  gnomon to its shadow's length at midday on the equinox and three vertical reference levels in pairs: me…

Cleostratus

(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…

Kykloi

(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 fi…

Cidenas

(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.  Astronomy Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) Bibliography Sources: P. Schnabel, Berossos und die babylon.-hell. Lit., 1923, 121-130 O. Neugebauer, Astronomical Cuneiform Texts, 195…

Rhetorius

(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 compilations, probably even incomplete, of 90 and 117 chapters, draws in particular on Antiochus [23] and Teucer of Babylon, as well as on Claudius Ptolemaeus [65], Vettius Valens, Iulianus [19] of Laodicea and Olympiodorus' [4] commentaries …

Critodemus

(325 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
(Κριτόδημος; Kritódēmos) [No German version] [1] Astrologer of the Hellenistic period Astrologer of the Hellenistic period, named by Pliny the Elder together with  Berossus, by Firmicus Maternus with the oldest representatives of Greek astrology, mainly used by  Vettius Valens (however, the horoscopes mentioned by Valens in connection with C. extend into a later period, in part into the 2nd cent. AD), then also by Hephaestion (2,10,41-46), Rhetorius and Theophilus of Edessa. His work Ὅρασις (Hórasis/‘Visio…

Hemisphairion

(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 earth that was thought to be central, the upper, visible celestial hollow sphere and the bottom, invisible half of the sky, then also c) the convex hemisphere of the earth on both sides of the horizon that was only deduced in antiquity. Furthermore human artefacts were also called hemisphairion: on a larg…

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…

Eclipses

(1,075 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] A. In Superstition Eclipses disturbed the usual regularity of day and night and frightened people as long as they were unable to explain these phenomena. In early times, it was believed that the heavenly bodies suffered under the power of the  demons and attempts were made to end this suffering with banging or loud shouting. On the other hand, Thessalian witches are supposed to have forced the moon down to earth with their magical practices (Pl. Grg. 513a, Hor. Epod. 5,46; 17,77, Ver…

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…

Pleiades

(496 words)

Author(s): Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster)
[German version] (πλειάδης/ pleiádēs, Latin pliades, also Βότρυς/ Bótrys, 'bunch of grapes' or 'curl'; Latin Vergiliae, 'twig'). In contrast to the Hyades, the P. were known from the time of Euripides and Hippocrates by the collective singular Πλειάς/ Pleiás: seven faint stars, placed close together, designated as a 'nebula'. According to Nicander [4], they are located on the tail of Taurus ascending in reverse, otherwise - because only its forequarters form stars - at the start of its sector. Both Hom. Il. 18,486 and Od. 5,272 ment…

Oenopides

(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…

Hyades

(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…
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