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 Egyptian calendar

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MessageEgyptian calendar

Egyptian calendar
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The ancient civil Egyptian calendar, known as the Annus Vagus (vague year) or "Wandering Year", had a year that was 365 days long, consisting of 12 months of 30 days each, plus 5 extra days at the end of the year. The months were divided into 3 "weeks" of ten days each.

This calendar was in use by at least 2700 BCE, but probably before that. A text from the reign of First Dynasty King Djer indicates that the Egyptians had already established a link between the heliacal rising and the beginning of the year. The Egyptians seem to have used a lunar calendar at an earlier date, but when they discovered the discrepancy between the lunar calendar and the actual passage of time, they switched to a calendar based on the Nile inundation. The first inundation according to the calendar was observed in Egypt's first capital, Memphis, at the same time as the heliacal rising of Sirius (Egyptian Sopdet, Greek Sothis). The Egyptian year was divided into the three seasons of akh.t (Inundation), pr.t (Growth - Winter) and shomu (Harvest - Summer).

The heliacal rising of Sothis returns to the same point in 1461 days, not the 1460 days (of 4 calendar years of 365 days)so the difference between a Sothic sidereal (Julian) year and a civil year is 1 day in 4 years. Centuries later, this mistakenly appears to be the seasonal year. The civil calendar as a constant 365 days (without leap day), presumed the rising star to return to the same date in the calendar every 1461 calendar years equal 1460 years (called a Sothic cycle). It is not seasonal (Gregorian) because in 1460 years a Julian date is 12 leap days more than 1460 seasonal years. The dates of the Julian calendar (46 BC) reveal that Egypt was aware of the 1508-year seasonal cycle, but Egypt chose to favor the Sothic cycle. The Maya noted this 48-year (12 leap day) difference for the seasonal year; 1508 calendar years equal 1507 seasonal years (Gregorian).

Similarly, the Egyptians were aware that 309 lunations nearly equalled 9125 days, or 25 Egyptian years, which was used in the 12th dynasty. (Parker, Chicago Oriental Institute: 1991 BC)

For much of Egyptian history, the months were not given individual names but rather were numbered within the three seasons. As early as the Middle Kingdom, however, each month was given its own name. These finally evolved into the New Kingdom months, which in turn gave rise to the Hellenized names that were used among others for chronology by Ptolemy in his Almagest. Astronomers in the Middle Ages used it as well because of its mathematical regularity—Copernicus for example constructed his tables for the motion of the planets based on the Egyptian year. The convention amongst modern Egyptologists is to number the months consecutively using Roman numerals.

According to Roman writer Censorinus, the Egyptian New Year's Day fell on July 20 in the Julian Calendar in 139 CE, which was a heliacal rising of Sirius in Egypt. This is a calculation of Sothis that scholars feel is a correction from the record which logs July 21 of 140 AD. From this it has been miscalculated that previous risings of Sothis on the Thoht 1 New Year was 1322 BCE, and before that was 2782 BCE. The 1460-year cycle is a misnomer; the current cycle is 1460 years, but the previous cycle presumed by Egypt as 1460 years was only 1452 years drifting from July 18 to July 20. Astronomers, and Richard Parker (Chicago Oriental Institute) prove the arc of vision for 1872 BC is July 17, making the previous cycle 2770 BC, not 2782 BC. This latter date has been postulated as the time when the calendar was invented, but Djer's reign preceded that date. Other 19th century historians pushed it back another whole cycle, to 4242 BCE July 20 (12 years earlier than Sothic new year rise). A respect for previous accurate scholars is frequently lost, and a return to previous pseudo-science myth is common. The rise of Sothis varies in Egypt as one day per degree of geolatitude. Memphis is July 20 (Gregorian Aug 2); to the north Alexandria is July 21, to the south Thebes is July 15, and Quban on the tropic line is July 13. Precess the sky back to the period 2770-1872 BC and these risings occure 3 days earlier.

In 238 BCE, the Ptolemaic rulers decreed that every fourth year should be 366 days long rather than 365. The Egyptians, most of whom were farmers, did not accept the reform as it was the agricultural seasons that made up their year. The reform eventually went into effect with the introduction of the "Alexandrian calendar" by Augustus in 26/25 BCE, which included a sixth epag omenal day for the first time in 22 BCE.[1]

The reformed Egyptian calendar continues to be used in Egypt as the Coptic calendar of the Egyptian Church and by the Egyptian populace at large, particularly the fellahin to calculate the agricultural seasons. Contemporary Egyptian farmers, like their ancient predecessors, divide the year into three seasons, namely winter, summer and inundation. It is also associated with local festivals such as the annual Flooding of the Nile and the ancient Spring festival sham en nisim.

The Ethiopian calendar is based on this calendar but uses Amharic names for its months and uses a different era. The French Republican Calendar was similar, but began its year at the autumnal equinox. British orrery maker John Gleave represented the Egyptian calendar in a reconstruction of the Antikythera mechanism.
Months No. Seasonal Names Middle Kingdom New Kingdom Greek Coptic Egyptian Arabic
I First of Akhet Tekh Dhwt Thoth Thout Tout
II Second of Akhet Menhet Pa-n-ip.t Phaophi Paopi Baba
III Third of Akhet Hwt-hwr Hwt-hwr Athyr Hathor Hatour
IV Fourth of Akhet Ka-hr-ka Ka-hr-ka Choiak Koiak Kiahk
V First of Proyet Sf-bdt Ta-'b Tybi Tobi Touba
VI Second of Proyet Rekh wer Mḫyr Mechir Meshir Amshir
VII Third of Proyet Rekh neds Pa-n-amn-htp.w Phamenoth Paremhat Baramhat
VIII Fourth of Proyet Renwet Pa-n-rnn.t Pharmouthi Paremoude Baramouda
IX First of Shomu Hnsw Pa-n-ḫns.w Pachon Pashons Bashans
X Second of Shomu Hnt-htj Pa-n-in.t Payni Paoni Ba'ouna
XI Third of Shomu Ipt-hmt Ipip Epiphi Epip Abib
XII Fourth of Shomu Wep-renpet Msw-r' Mesore Mesori Mesra

[edit] Notes

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Egyptian calendar :: Commentaires

Re: Egyptian calendar
Message le Dim 4 Fév - 3:14 par mihou
The Egyptian Calendar System

seasons.gif (3027 bytes)The calendar system of ancient Egypt is unique to both the cosmology of the Egyptians and their religion. Unlike the modern Julian calendar system, with it's 365 days to a year, the Egyptians followed a calendar system of 360 days, with three seasons, each made up of 4 months, with thirty days in each month. The seasons of the Egyptians corresponded with the cycles of the Nile, and were known as Inundation (pronounced akhet which lasted from June 21st to October 21st), Emergence (pronounced proyet which lasted from October 21st to February 21st), and Summer (pronounced shomu which lasted from February 21st to June 21st).

The beginning of the year, also called "the opening of the year", was marked by the emergence of the star Sirius, in the constellation of Canis Major. The constellation emerged roughly on June 21st., and was called "the going up of the goddess Sothis". The star was visible just before sunrise, and is still one of the brightest stars in the sky, located to the lower left of Orion and taking the form of the dogs nose in the constellation Canis Major.

Though the Egyptians did have a 360 day calendar, in a literal sense they did have a 365 day calendar system. The beginning of the year was marked by the addition of five additional days, known as "the yearly five days". These additional five days, were times of great feasting and celebration for the Egyptians, and it was not uncommon for the Egyptians to rituals, and other celebratory dealings on these days. The Egyptian calendar also took on other important functions within Egyptian life specifically in dealing with the astrology of the people.
Re: Egyptian calendar
Message le Dim 4 Fév - 3:16 par mihou
Egyptian Calendar

Ancient Egyptians used a calendar that had 365 days in a year, without exceptions. The year was divided into 12 months of 30 days each, plus 5 extra days (referred to by the ancient Greeks as the epagomenai) after the last month. Because of its great regularity, this calendar was used by ancient Greek and European astronomers until only a few centuries ago.

The names and lengths of the months of the Egyptian calendar are listed in the following table.

Number Name Length
1 Thoth 30
2 Phaophi 30
3 Athyr 30
4 Choiak 30
5 Tybi 30
6 Mecheir 30
7 Phamenoth 30
8 Pharmuthi 30
9 Pachon 30
10 Payni 30
11 Epiphi 30
12 Mesore 30
epagomenai 5

The CALENDAR function regards the epagomenai as a 13th month. The era used for this calendar by the CALENDAR function is the Era of Nabonassar, used by Ptolemy, with epoch 26 February -746 C.E. Other eras that have been used elsewhere are the Era of Philippos (which marks the death of Alexander the Great) starting in year 425 of Nabonassar, the Era of emperor Hadrian of Rome, starting in year 864 of Nabonassar, and the Era of emperor Antoninus of Rome, starting in year 885 of Nabonassar.
Le calendrier de l'Égypte antique
Message le Lun 23 Juil - 22:15 par mihou
Le calendrier de l'Égypte antique, (également appelé calendrier nilotique) était axé sur les fluctuations annuelles du Nil
et avait comme but premier la régulation des travaux agricoles au cours
de l'année. Les Égyptiens définissaient d'ailleurs l'année comme « le
temps nécessaire pour une récolte » et le hiéroglyphe qui la désigne est une jeune pousse avec un bourgeon (renpet).
Le calendrier égyptien était basé sur les cycles lunaires (30 jours à peu près) (cf. Lune) et la récurrence annuelle du lever héliaque de l'étoile Sothis (Sirius),
vers le 19 juillet de notre calendrier. L'année était divisée en 3
saisons en fonction de la crue du Nil et de son impact sur
l'environnement :

Akhet (Akhit) « Inondation » (3ḫt)

Peret (Perit) « Émergence (des terres) » (prt, décrue du Nil, germination, saison fraîche)

Chemou (Shemou) « Chaleur » (šmw, été, saison des récoltes et de leur taxation)

Chaque saison comprenait 4 mois de 30 jours chacun. Les cinq jours
restants (six à partir de l'époque romaine) étaient appelés jours
additionnels ou épagomènes. Ils étaient ajoutés à la fin du calendrier,
entre le dernier jour de la saison Shemou et le premier jour de la
saison Akhet. Les jours épagomènes étaient considérés comme jours de
naissance des grands dieux d’État qu'étaient, dans l'ordre, Osiris, Horus, Seth, Isis et Nephthys. Chaque mois était découpé en trois périodes de dix jours, les décades. Les journées avaient une durée de vingt-quatre heures.
Les mois de l'année à l'époque des Ptolémées :


Thout (Thot)

Phaophi (Pa n Ipt, celui de Karnak, Amon)

Athyr (Hathor)

Choeac ou Khoiak (kA Hr kA)

Tybi (tA aAbt, l'offrande)

Méchir ou Mekhir (pA n mxrw, celui de Mekher)

Phaminoth ou Phamenoth (pA n ImnHtp, celui d'Amenhotep)

Pharmouti (pA n Rnnwtt, celui de Rennoutet)

Pachon ou Pakhon (pA n xnsw, celui de Khonsou)

Payni (pA n int, celui du ouadi)

Epiphi ou Epiph (ip ipi, fête de Ipipi)

Mésori ou Mesore (mswt Ra, naissance de Rê)

Note : Les noms des mois sont donnés en langue copte avec leurs équivalents hiéroglyphiques du Nouvel Empire.
Le premier jour de la saison Akhet correspondait approximativement
au début de l’inondation. Pour les Égyptiens, la montée des eaux était
un événement majeur à plus d’un titre : d’une part, elle mettait fin à
la saison sèche, et d’autre part, de son importance dépendait la
qualité des récoltes, une crue trop faible pouvant entraîner une famine
alors qu'une crue trop forte pouvait causer des inondations
dévastatrices. La montée des eaux intervenait peu de temps après le lever héliaque de l'étoile Sothis (Sirius)
dans le ciel égyptien. L'apparition de l'étoile constituait un repère
indispensable au paysan égyptien, qui ne pouvait se fier au calendrier
civil en raison d’un décalage de plus en plus important entre l’année
civile de 365 jours et l’année solaire,
année de 365 jours et 6 heures à peu près. Ce décalage était d’environ
un jour tous les quatre ans. Cependant, après 1460 ans, il y avait de
nouveau concordance entre les calendriers civil et solaire, le lever
héliaque de Sothis coïncidant de nouveau avec le premier jour de la
saison Akhet. Cette période de 1460 ans est appelée période sothiaque
par les astronomes ; elle permet d’établir la chronologie de l’histoire
pharaonique, car les Égyptiens ignoraient les dates absolues.
Bien qu'ayant abandonné très tôt leur calendrier astronomique pour
un calendrier civil, les Égyptiens ne s'étaient pas pour autant
désintéressés de l'astronomie,
bien au contraire. On leur doit notamment les plus anciennes cartes du
ciel connues et l'on sait qu'ils avaient une connaissance approfondie
des phénomènes astronomiques, connaissance basée sur l'observation
quotidienne et méthodique des astres.
Les astronomes grecs empruntèrent leur calendrier civil aux
Égyptiens et, avec quelques modifications, il fut utilisé jusqu'à la
fin du Moyen Âge.
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