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TOPIC: Ancient Astronomy


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RE: Ancient Astronomy
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Over 28,000 people entered but in the end the names of just 50 lucky people were plucked from the hat and given a golden ticket to witness the winter solstice in Newgrange.
Entries from those hoping to see the unique spectacle in Co Meath had come from as far away as America and Australia -- but an individual from Co Sligo got the first lucky ticket yesterday.
A total of 50 names were drawn by children from Donore, Slane and Knockcommon National Schools, and they will be permitted to bring a partner on one of the days between December 18 and 23.

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Fourth segment of NASA Connect Ancient Observatories describing the Ancient Mayan civilization and their accomplishments. This segment compares the Mayan counting system to the Roman counting system and has a brief exercise for students to add the numbers 21 and 33 using both systems.

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Third segment of NASA Connect Ancient Observatories that shows two examples of how the Navajo used used structures to track progress of the sun in the sky.



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Second segment of NASA Connect Ancient Observatories explaining how the height of the sun relates to the growing seasons and the length of daylight. This segment describes how Ancient Egyptian and Greek cultures used astronomy in their lives. The segment also contains an activity for exploring how a gnomon works. In the activity students must track the shadows made by a gnomon in 30 minute intervals. The activity will teach students how the length of the shadows and the angles created by the gnomon are related to the position of the sun.





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Archeoastronomy
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First segment of NASA Connect Ancient Observatories explaining the foundations of astronomy and the how the Earth moves relative to the sun. This segment explains how the Earth's tilt creates the 4 seasons.




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Newgrange
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The Megalithic Passage Tomb at Newgrange was built about 3200 BC. The kidney shaped mound covers an area of over one acre and is surrounded by 97 kerbstones, some of which are richly decorated with megalithic art. The 19 metre long inner passage leads to a cruciform chamber with a corbelled roof. It is estimated that the construction of the Passage Tomb at Newgrange would have taken a work force of 300 at least 20 years.

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Latitude: 53.694466N  Longitude: 6.476254W

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Summer Solstice
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Briefing: Druids, pagans and party-goers prepare for the summer solstice
What is it? The solstice occurs twice a year when the Earth's axis tilts furthest towards or away from the Sun.
The name solstice is taken from the Latin "sol", meaning sun, and "sistere", meaning to stand still. The term also refers to the whole day on which this passage of the Sun occurs.
In some parts of the world the solstice begins the seasons, while in the UK they are considered to be centre points of the year, occurring within days of midsummer and midwinter.
The summer solstice is on 21 June and is the longest day of the year for the northern hemisphere, with about 17 hours of daylight in the UK.

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Ancient Astronomy
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The role of sea navigation in sparking the ancient investigation of the stars cannot be underestimated. Our earliest stories speak of the glories of the master mariner, Odysseus, caught in the powerful vortex of Poseidon's wrath for 10 long and gruelling years. Our first maps of the surrounding island world were described then, along with the peoples who once walked their shores.
How long had this maritime culture been evolving before it reached this pinnacle of prominence, penned by the first author of the Western tradition?
Around 7,000 B.C., long before Odysseus's time, Europe's first groups of farmers and herders appeared in Macedonia, Thessaly, the Peloponnese and Crete. A thriving trade network was established around the central island group, the Cyclades, with a rich and powerful elite controlling its core. Delos, a sacred island of an earlier time, stood at the spiritual centre. Myth records that Apollo and Artemis (Sun and the Moon) were born here.
Time is defined in the ancient world by Stonehenge and the Pyramids; but in Malta and Erie, there are temples which are even older than these. Radiocarbon dating suggests that the extensive site at Newgrange (outside Dublin) was being built between 3,700 to 3,200 B.C. The sites on Malta were used consistently from 3,600 to 2,500 B.C. Each of these sites demonstrated considerable astronomical awareness, accurately tracking both solstice and equinox.

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