
Re: Ariadne's thread
Posted:
Dec 2, 2011 2:25 AM


Appendix regarding the calendar of the Maya
The 260day count would have been the 'spine' of the calendar, a solid numerical structure into which the astronomical cycles would have been 'hung', so to say. Longtime observations combined with number sequences would have allowed to establish these 'equations':
42 tropical years are 59 Tzolkin 405 lunations are 46 Tzolkin 240 synodic Venus orbits are 539 Tzolkin
Mathematically one can then deduce the following correspondences:
1932 tropical years are 23895 lunations 3773 tropical years are 2360 synodic Venus orbits 736 Venus years are 14553 lunations
Reduced forms:
19 years  235 lunations
(19 x 23895 = 454005, 235 x 1932 = 454020)
8 years  5 Venus years
(8 x 2360 = 18880, 5 x 3773 = 18865)
259 years  162 Venus years
(259 x 2360 = 611240, 162 x 3773 = 611226)
1247 years  780 Venus years
(1247 x 2360 = 2942920, 780 x 3773 = 2942940)
22 Venus years  435 lunations
(22 x 14553 = 320166, 736 x 435 = 320160)
Most writings of the Maya went up in flames. We have to reconstruct their methods and fill the gaps from the numbers themselves, and from the astronomical cycles. In other words: we need an experimental approach also in the history of mathematics. We can't just project our modern methods backward in time. We have to allow the ancient ones to have done things their way, and try to reconstruct their methods by way of experiment.
"The past is another country: they do things differently there." J.T. Harvey, The GoBetween

