CfA Colloquium Schedule Spring 2010
 15 April 2010

15 April 2010

Speaker: Juan Antonio Belmonte (Instituto De Astrofisica de Canarias)

Title:TEMPLES, STARS AND PYRAMIDS: selected results of the Egyptian-Spanish Mission on the archaeoastronomy of ancient Egypt.

Abstract:For the last six years, the Egyptian-Spanish Mission for the Archaeoastronomy of ancient Egypt has been working in the country of the pharaohs. In a series of six campaigns, we have visited nearly every corner of the land of the Nile and measured more than 500 alignments (350 in temples) in nearly a 100 archaeological sites. Campaigns were initially planned following a geographical criterion -Upper, Middle, Lower Egypt (respectively), Western and Eastern Desert Oasis, etc. However, in subsequent campaigns, we were performing selective experiments, in an attempt to falsify or test earlier hypotheses, often re-visiting sites for new measurements, or in order to get direct observations of predicted astronomical phenomena. Campaign by campaign, this seminar will narrate a brief story of the development of such a project, showing how some preliminary hypotheses had to be abandoned in the process and how new ideas were becoming more and more substantiated as time passed. We will initiate our journey in the splendid temples of Upper Egypt and will finish in the domains of the lunar god, Thoth, demonstrating that Astronomy did play a fundamental role in the search for cosmic order of ancient Egyptians.

Video of the Presentation (Talks can be viewed with RealPlayer. Free download is available from )


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