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Mysterious Slab in Russia May Be a Sundial

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Author Topic: Mysterious Slab in Russia May Be a Sundial  (Read 99 times)
Cynthia
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« on: October 29, 2014, 04:14:17 pm »

And the Bronze Age people who created the sundial weren't only interested in the sun. The circles that didn't correspond to solar movements were linked to lunar wanderings. Because of the angle of the moon's orbit, our lone satellite goes through an 18.6-year cycle. During this cycle, when it rises, its position shifts from southerly to northerly, and its movements across the sky are relatively high and low. The Rostov slab tracks these movements with circular carvings indicating the southernmost and northernmost moonrises of these "low" and "high" moons.
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The slab was found at a Bronze Age Srubna or Srubnaya site, a culture which flourished on the steppes between the Ural Mountains and Ukraine's Dneiper River. The Srubna people may have used the sun/moondial to time their annual rituals or to organize their work lives. Or, Vodolazhskaya said, the artifact may be the work of Bronze Age scientists.
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"One cannot exclude a purely research appointment of such instruments. … In ancient times, people were just as inquisitive as modern physicists and astronomers," Vodolazhskaya said.

In combination with the Ukraine sundial and other Bronze Age artifacts, the find suggests that the people in the Northern Black Sea region were astronomically savvy, Vodolazhskaya said, with technology on par with what was seen in ancient Egypt around the same time. The new study has not yet been peer-reviewed, but is available on the prepublication website arXiv.org
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