The Roof Axe as Circumpolar Device

This article explores the use of axe motifs within a form of carved schematic art unique to the megalithic monuments near Carnac, southern Brittany, France. First published in February 2014.

A diagram found on the underside of the capstone of a chambered dolmen called Kercado (see figure 1) appears to hold metrological and astronomical meanings. Classified as a type of AXE, local axe motifs are said to have three distinct forms (a) triangular blades, (b) hafted axes and (c) the Mane Ruthual type [Twohig, 1981[1]]. 

Figure 1 Well preserved sculpted-stone axe-head motif in Kercado dolmen

Types b and c are often found in the singular on the undersides to roof slabs and in the case of form (b), the hafted axe, I have attributed its display below the roof slab of Table des Marchands at Locmariaquer (inset right) as being used to represent the north pole between 5000 and 4000 BC, at a time when there was no star near to the pole itself. The abstract point of the north pole, the rotational axis of the earth, is shown as a loop attached to the base of the axe haft, whilst the axe head then represented a chosen circumpolar star, as this rotates counter-clockwise in the northern sky, at the fixed distance of the haft from the pole itself. Note how compatible this idea of an axe ploughing the northern skies is to our own circumpolar constellation, The Plough. Note also that the eastern horizon moves through the equatorial stars at the same angular rate as the marker star moves around the north pole.

Continue reading “The Roof Axe as Circumpolar Device”

The Golden Mean compared to PI

In reviewing some ancient notes of mine, I came across an interesting comparison between the Golden Mean (Phi) and PI. They are more interesting in reverse:

A phi square (area: 2.618, side: 1.618) has grown in area relative to a unit square by the amount (area: 0.618) plus the rectangle (area:1 ). This reveals the role of phi’s reciprocal square (area: 0.384) in being the reciprocal of the reciprocal so that in product they return the unity (area: 1).

On the right, the phi squared square showing how the reciprocal of phi and its square uniquely sum to unity (area: 1), a property that is scale invariant between structures who share the same units and grow according to the Golden Mean.
Continue reading “The Golden Mean compared to PI”

Sacred Latitudes of the West 1.

first published on Sunday, 19 September 2010 10:35

Adventures in Geodetic Imagination

At the heart of Sacred Number and the Origins of Civilization lay the story of the Secret Men of the North, which followed the west-to-east path of a European Michael line, in the sense of the original invasion of the Indo-Europeans of the Baltic into the Mediterranean and as the later axis this provided for the Normans to orchestrate the Crusades; ostensibly to re-take Jerusalem from the world of Islam, that was also competing over Europe, from Spain, Sicily and Levant.

Whilst working on a continuation of such a geodetic story, the concept of Sacred Latitudes emerged in which parallels of latitude might have some psycho-historical relevance, based on the original insight that, in the last century, “manifestations of Mary” have emerged, first in Garabandal in Spain and recently in Medjugorje, in Bosnia, that are on exactly the same line of latitude, 43 degrees and 12 minutes. (brought to my attention by the late John D. Kirby’s studies of “Mary places”.)

Continue reading “Sacred Latitudes of the West 1.”

Venus: Planet of Harmony: part 1

Venus has played a strong role in mankind’s imagination, being a bright object in the sky in the evening sky and then the morning sky, whilst also viewed as the primary female goddess of the Ancient Near East. To recent astronomers, she is covered in impenetrable clouds, whilst the invention of radar revealed a rocky sister planet to Earth but with no life as we know it. It is perennially associated with the pentagon, because its synodic periods draw out a pentagon within the zodiac in 8 solar years. The reasons it does so are intriguing to say the least, and we explore the unusual numerical characteristics of Venus seen from Earth.

(adapted from a 1994 text, using 2020 hindsight)

The Venus cycle of eight years in which a morning or evening star has five manifestations, dividing the zodiac into a pentagram (Figure 1.6 Sacred Number and the Origins of Civilization)

Part 1: A Nearly Golden Mean

Continue reading “Venus: Planet of Harmony: part 1”

Astronomical Time within Clava Cairns

In North East Scotland, near Inverness, lies Balnuaran of Clava, a group of three cairns with a unique and distinctive style, called Clava cairns; of which evidence of 80 examples have been found in that region. They are round, having an inner and outer kerb of upright stones between which are an infill of stones. They may or may not have a passageway from the outer to the inner kerb, into the round chamber within. At Balnuaran, two have passages on a shared alignment to the midwinter solstice. In contrast, the central ring cairn has no passage and it is staggered west of that shared axis.

This off-axis ring cairn could have been located to be illuminated by the midsummer sunrise from the NE Cairn, complementing the midwinter sunset to the south of the two passageways of the other cairns. Yet the primary and obvious focus for the Balnuaran complex is the midwinter sunset down the aligned passages. In fact, the ring cairn is more credibly aligned to the lunar minimum standstill of the moon to the south – an alignment which dominates the complex since, in that direction the horizon is nearly flat whilst the topography of the site otherwise suffers from raised horizons.

Cairns at Balnuaran of Clava. plan by A. Thom and pictures by Ian B. Wright
Continue reading “Astronomical Time within Clava Cairns”

Three Lunar Orbits as 82 day-inches

Sacred Number and the Lords of Time interpreted Thom’s megalithic fathom of 6.8 feet (as 2.72 feet times 2.5) found at Carnac’s Alignments as a useful number of 82 day-inches between stones in the stone rows of Le Menec. After 82 days, the moon is in almost exactly the same place, amongst the stars, because its orbit of 27.32166 days is nearly 27 and one third days. Three orbits sums to nearly 82 days. But the phase of the moon at that repeated place in the sky will be different.

The stone rows of Le Menec are not straight and in places resemble the deviations of the lunar nodes seen in late or early moon rise or setting phenomenon.
Continue reading “Three Lunar Orbits as 82 day-inches”