The Saros cycle is made up of 19 eclipse years of 364.62 days whilst the Metonic cycle is made up of 19 solar years of 365.2422 days. This unusually small number of years, NINETEEN, arises because of a close coupling of most of the major parameters of the Earth-Sun-Moon system which acts as a discrete system, a system also commensurate with Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Venus. It is this type of coherent cyclicity which lies at the centre of what the megalithic were able to achieve through day-inch or similar counting of visible time periods and comparing of counts using geometric means. [see my books, especially Sacred Number and the Lords of Time, for a fuller discussion].
It would have been relatively easy for megaithic astronomy to notice that eclipses occur in slots separated by eclipse seasons of 173.3 days and also to see that the difference between lunar and solar years resolves over the 19 year of the Metonic so that lunar orbits, lunar months, the starry sky and the rotation of the earth provide a close repetition of alignments over 19 solar years which equal 235 lunar months and 254 lunar orbits. The Saros period is 223 lunar months long and is therefore one lunar year of 12 months short of the Metonic of 235 lunar months.
image of stone L9, left of corridor of Gavrinis Cairn, 4Km east of Carnac complex. [image: neolithiqueblog] This article was first published in 2012.
One test of validity for any interpretation of a megalithic monument, as an astronomically inspired work, is whether the act of interpretation has revealed something true but unknown about astronomical time periods. The Gavrinis stone L9, now digitally scanned, indicates a way of counting the 18 year Saros period using triangular counters founded on the three solar year relationship of just over 37 lunar months, a major subject (around 4000 BC) of the Le Manio Quadrilateral, 4 Km west of Gavrinis. The Saros period is a whole number, 223, of lunar months because the moon must be in the same phase (full or new) as the earlier eclipse for an eclipse to be possible.
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].
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.