The Mythology of Venus is a collection of essays that summarizes the archaeoastronomy, calendar associations, religious and cultural icons, and myths identified with the planet Venus. The book concentrates on Western Europe, the Mediterranean, the Near East, and the East from the Paleolithic Age to the Iron Age. It reveals the archetype of a goddess associated with the planet Venus who is identified with transformation, spiritual resurrection, and enlightenment. The characteristics of the goddess are steeped in sexual metaphors which contain images of birth and re-birth, and they reveal a pattern of symbols that follows the journey of the planet Venus through its cycles in the night sky. Moreover, the journey of Venus and the corresponding icons associated with the goddess are part of an intricate pattern of symbolic language that is seen on ancient monuments and on the ancient calendars of several cultures. Temples from France and Ireland to Greece and Malta trace the journey of the planet Venus and the story of the goddess of Venus.
Cosmology, Calendars, and Horizon-Based Astronomy in Ancient Mesoamerica is an interdisciplinary tour de force that establishes the critical role astronomy played in the religious and civic lives of the ancient peoples of Mesoamerica. Providing extraordinary examples of how Precolumbian peoples merged ideas about the cosmos with those concerning calendar and astronomy, the volume showcases the value of detailed examinations of astronomical data for understanding ancient cultures. The volume is divided into three sections: investigations into Mesoamerican horizon-based astronomy, the cosmological principles expressed in Mesoamerican religious imagery and rituals related to astronomy, and the aspects of Mesoamerican calendars related to archaeoastronomy. It also provides cutting-edge research on diverse topics such as records of calendar and horizon-based astronomical observation (like the Dresden and Borgia codices), iconography of burial assemblages, architectural alignment studies, urban planning, and counting or measuring devices. Contributors—who are among the most respected in their fields— explore new dimensions in Mesoamerican timekeeping and skywatching in the Olmec, Maya, Teotihuacano, Zapotec, and Aztec cultures. It will be of great interest to students and scholars of anthropology, archaeology, art history, and astronomy.
How do calendars and clocks influence considerations of school effectiveness? From the creation of compulsory education to the future of virtual schooling, Weiss and Brown trace two centuries of school practices, policies and research linking the concept of time with ‘opportunity to learn’. School calendars and clocks are shaped by both the physical and social worlds, and the ‘clock of schooling’ is shown to be one of the ‘great clocks of society’ that helps to frame school effectiveness. School time does not operate in a vacuum, but within curriculum, teaching and learning situations. The phrase ‘chrono-curriculum’ was devised by the authors as a metaphor for exploring issues of school effectiveness within the time dimension. Using American and Canadian sources, stories are created to illustrate four themes about time and school effectiveness. The first three stories utilize access, attendance and testing as criteria associated with these eras of schooling. How will the story read in the fourth era, the digital age, which forces us to a reconsideration of time and its influence on education? Quoting David Berliner in his Foreword: “ this is an opportune time for these authors to bring us insights into the reasons we in North America created our public school systems, and how the chrono-curriculum influences those systems. The authors’ presentation of our educational past provides educators a chance to think anew about how we might do schooling in our own times.”
Presented from the viewpoint of the history of mathematics, this book explores both epistemological aspects of Chinese traditional mathematical astronomy and lunisolar calendrical calculations. The following issues are addressed: (1) connections with non-Chinese cultural areas; (2) the possibility or impossibility of using mathematics to predict astronomical phenomena, a question that was constantly raised by the Chinese from antiquity through medieval times; (3) the modes of representation of numbers, and in particular the zero, found in the context of Chinese calendrical calculations; and (4) a detailed analysis of lunisolar calendrical calculations. Fully worked-out examples and comparisons between the results of calculations and the content of Chinese historical calendars from various periods are provided. Traditional Chinese calendrical and mathematical astronomy consists of permanently reformed mathematical procedures designed to predict, but not explain, phenomena pertaining to astronomy and related areas. Yet, despite appearances, models of the mathematical techniques hidden behind this voluminous corpus reveal that they depend on a limited number of clear-cut mathematical structures. Although only a small fraction of these techniques have been fully studied, what is known surprisingly broadens our knowledge of the history of Chinese mathematics. Sinologists interested in the history of Chinese science, and anyone interested in the history of Chinese mathematics, the Chinese calendar, and the history of Chinese mathematical astronomy from its origin (104 BC) to its European reform (AD 1644) will find this book very useful. The present English language edition is a fully revised and updated version of the French original. Even though this is a research monograph in sinology, no particular sinological background is required, although a basic understanding of ‘concrete mathematics’ is needed. From the reviews of the French edition: This is a demanding, rigorous book to read ... worth the concentrated study it requires. The rewards are not only in the details but in the general overview that ...[it] provides. Joseph Dauben, EASTM, 2011 ...first Work in a Western language to turn to for anyone interested in the details of Chinese calendrical computations. Benno Van Dalen, ISIS, 2011 Martzloff’s careful scholarship and his overall look at the calendar beyond astronomical calculations, ..., make this book a most valuable contributions to a field of increasing interest. U. D’Ambrosio, Mathematical Reviews, 2013
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