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Senmut's star map showing e.g. planets Saturn and Jupiter and stars of Sirius (Isis) and Orion (improv.pict. © 1999)

 

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New Discovery In the World's Oldest Star Map
1:  Résumé on dating the Egyptian star map
2:  Evaluations, response, reviews
3:  Author's Notes
4:  Discussions, News, and Scientific Libraries
5:  On History
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SUMMARY, PRESS RELEASE and RESPONSES regarding Ove von Spaeth's treatise on dating Senmut's star map, which was published in "Centaurus" 42;3, July-August 2000.
          The paper in question was later re-edited, for non-astronomers, to be used in the appendix in volume 2 of Ove von Spaeth's book-series on the historical Moses (cf.  web-page concerning Vol. 2  and  Debate on Vol. 2 ).

SUMMARY / PRESS RELEASE CONCERNING THE TREATISE
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New discovery in an ancient Egyptian star-map


Updating Ancient Astronomy


The astronomical knowledge of the ancient Egyptians turns out to be surprisingly broader than previously imagined. According to the new-orientating, larger analysis: the world's oldest star-map seems to contain information of an actual celestial event of its time. This discovery uncovers the earliest exact scientific description of an otherwise rare, but not unknown, celestial phenomenon.

          This 3,500-year old star-map adorning one of the ceilings in the tomb of the great Senmut (Senenmut) near Luxor (Thebes) apparently demonstrates a previously unknown aspect of the astronomical situation in Egypt around 1,500 BC. The data encoded in this map, and its significance, has for the first time been investigated by Danish researcher Ove von Spaeth and is published in July-August 2000 in the international journal of the history of the exact sciences, "Centaurus", vol. 42.

          The map's configurations, which have been considered as mythic representations, are now seen to be depictions of a rare gathering of planets in well-defined celestial positions. The information contained in the map refers to a specific point of time.
          The re-evaluation of this and of subsequent maps, together with the data conained therein, gives birth to new perspectives. By introducing these reference points of time - substantiated in astronomical terms - the appropriate chronology of the epoch in question, which has been much disputed, may now be dated with considerably greater precision than possible before.

Data:
Ove von Spaeth: "Dating the oldest Egyptian Star Map",
Centaurus International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science and Technology,
Vol. 42;3, (July-August) 2000, pp.159-179,
Blackwell / Munksgaard International Publishers, Copenhagen.
ISSN 0008-8984
Editorial staff: centaurus@ifa.au.dk

*
Supplementary Information

The Oldest Known Scientific Report

The well-known Egyptian star map in question was carried out by Senmut who was the vizier to Queen Hatshepsut and also the calendar registrar of Egypt during a very interesting period of the 18th dynasty (16th-15th century BCE).
          The recently decoded material can be objectively proven, based on modern astronomical calculations, to depict important astronomical circumstances. It has now become clear that the map of Senmut neither depicts an arbitrary gathering of planets in the sky nor is it a virtual copy of possible older patterns made by Senmut's predecessors.

          Since this stellar map describes a planetary conjunction (i.e. a close encounter of the planets) in which a unique pattern of the positions of the planets concentrated within a defined sector of the sky, it therefore contains information unmistakably related to a fixed point of time. It has been possible to calculate this as May 1534 BC, (ed.: any doubts about the accuracy of the calculations? - please, study FAQ: Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map ).
          According to the analysis, this dating may additionally be supported by the map's record of a simultaneous solar eclipse. The map seems to have been made later than the events in question, and although the eclipse was possibly not observed directly, it had been relatively easy to re-calculate and put on the map. Likewise, most of the planets are recorded without they could be seen in the sky due to their placements near to the sun. The presented interpretation seems confirmed with great precision by modern astronomical methods. Accordingly, Senmut's star map must be acknowledged as one of history's oldest concretely recorded scientific achievements.


A Forgotten Tradition

Subsequently produced star-maps in Egypt seem to confirm this discovery. Created under the reigns of different pharaohs during 400 years or more after the first map, these maps exhibit Senmut's principle of depicting a certain kind of a planetary conjunction in the certain celestial sector. These findings seem to be in accordance with a now forgotten tradition by which these younger star-maps were produced only at the time of those pharaohs, such as Ramses II, where the actual conjunctions of the relevant type appeared in the Egyptian sky.

          Many scientific disciplines have been involved in Ove von Spaeth's project: especially including astronomy and Egyptology - and with valuable correcting data contributed by Dr.Scient. Kristian Peder Moesgaard, Director of the Steno Museum (Denmark's National Museum for the History of Science) and Egyptologist Dr.phil.h.c. Erik Iversen, formerly Associate Professor at the University of Copenhagen. The "Centaurus International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science and Technology" is edited and issued by the History of Science Department, Aarhus University, Denmark (and published by Blackwell-Munksgaard).

 
The constellations Sirius and Orion represented the gods Isis and Osiris in Ancient Egypt
Sidetop
EVALUATION, RESPONSE, REVIEWS
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Perspective and Reactions by Decoding the Star Map

The result and the perspectives of Ove von Spaeth's decoding of the Senmut map have been shown a great interest and have been recorded, evaluated, acknowledged as well as disputed or protested.
          Some of the responses are listed below. The answers to most of the many questions and reactions are presented in detail in the FAQ-list on next web page.

*

          Some misleading readings and reactions, unfortunately, have been seen too often reappearing, therefore the following facts ought to be recalled:

          -  that the treatise on the dating contained in the Senmut star map never states that the mentioned solar eclipse had been observed in Egypt. The recording on the map only shows that the calculated eclipse has in fact taken place.
          -  the paper does not mention anything about a total eclipse; and it is a fact that  also annular eclipses were recorded by the ancients.
          - moreover, it is never stated that the row of planets could be seen at the same time as the eclipse - in fact, besides the differences of day and night observations, the map might show that some days had past after the eclipse.
          - it is hardly possible on a pc or laptop to obtain a result with the necessary precision by using normal computer star programs. These can never match the huge computer astronomy programs (important extra details) at the scientific institutions.

          All this is being taken care of in the treatise and carefully emphasized in the text. However, many people have exposed not being able to read the few pages, or even take a look before forming their opinion of a text they have never read.

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          "... the findings are very ingenious and admirable, and quite surprising considering the apparent lack of interest of the Egyptians in this sort of astronomy ...I have visited and photographed the Senmut tomb several times, and I find it quite fascinating. Thus I find the paper especially interesting ...".

Owen Gingerich, Research Professor in Astronomy and the History of Science, The Harvard-Smithsonian Institution, Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge Mass. - (11 October 2001)

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          "... the article on the Senmut ceiling, with so many interesting observations ...".

Erik Hornung, Professor Dr., Ägyptologisches Seminar der Universität, Basel - (24 October 2001)

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          "... I remain unconvinced by the arguments. The main problem is the underestimating of the question of older traditions ...".

Joachim Friedrich Quack, Dr., Ägyptologisches Seminar, Freie Universität, Berlin - (2 October 2001)

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          "... We congratulate for the discovery and we wish the author good luck with the further investigations ...".

George V. Coyne, S.J., Director of Specula Vaticana (Vatican Observatory), Cittą del Vaticano; - & Gustav Teres, S.J., astronomer, Vatican Observatory, Castel Gandolfo, Italy - (12 October 2001)

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          "... Voprosyi hronologii. Datirovka egipetskogo ... (etc. ... - quotation from Russian text translates:)  Chronology problem - solution of the Egyptian celestial picture is not as by Fomenko. - We remind you that I tried to find better interpretations concerning the celestial picture, and such a solution was rapidly found... in the new (fresh) issue of the journal of the history of science Centaurus 2000 vol. 42 pp 159-179, publishing the paper of Ove von Spaeth, 'Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map' ...".

Zdhems, Dist - http://hbar.phys.msu.su/gorm/wwwboard/voprchr/981745387.htm - (9 February 2001)

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          "... A lengthy illustrated article... by Ove von Spaeth concerning the astronomical ceiling of the tomb of Senenmut - published in Centaurus ...".

David Moyer, KMT Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt - (Winter 2000-2001, Vol.11, No.4, p.10)

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          "... this important and fascinating paper - many congratulations on the research ...and it is a major advance. - (Years ago I did an English translation - not published so far - of E.M. Antoniadi's book on Egyptian astronomy) ...".

Sir Patrick Moore, D.Sc., Astronomer, CBE, FRAS, BBC Science editor, Selsey, England - (15 September 2000)

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          "... While serious papers by P.J. Huber, Michel-Noziéres, Fermor and Steele are in the style of the journal that by O. von Spaeth is astonishingly far from it ... useless and misleading ...".

Salvo De Meis, sademeis@tin.it - (3 November 2000)

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          "... the paper on the Dating of the Oldest Egyptian Star Map, together with the summary and the FAQ, - I have read it with interest ...".

M.S. Tite, Professor, Director: Archaeological Science, Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art, University of Oxford - (9 October 2001)

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          "... A controversial interpretation of the Senmut star map ...".

Gary D. Thompson, (West Melton, Australia), - Studies of Occidental Constellations and Star Names to the Classical Period, - http://members.optusnet.com.au/~gtosiris/page4.html - (2002, & 3 October 2003)

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          "... this paper, as I have said earlier, was an interesting read and was informative... (an excellent site - do a search - on: www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut2-faq_en.asp ) ...".

TrueCreation, - www.evcforum.net/ubb/Forum12/HTML/000037-6.html - Creation Versus Evolution Forum, Posts: 1708, From: Riverview, FL, USA, - Message 85 of 113 - (11 Marts 2002)

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          "... Risorse Bibliche lingua e scrittura ebraica. - Site sobre Qumran e os Manuscritos do Mar Morto. Mantido por Elio Jucci, Universitą degli Studi di Pavia, Itįlia. - Elio Jucci : SETH - "Semitica et Theologica".
          - Calendari. A proposito di Calendari (questo mese)... č noto a tutti quanto la questione del calendario fosse importante nel mondo ebraico ... per tale motivo dedicherņ almeno una pagina a links connessi in qualche modo con questo tema. ... Calendari: [VII -2003] - An Egyptian Star-map. By Ove von Spaeth, Independent Scholar, Denmark ( http://www.moses-egypt.net ). ..."

Elio Jucci, Ricercatore Confermato - Lingua e Letteratura Ebraica - Dipartimento di Scienze dell'Antichitą, Facoltą di Lettere e Filosofia - Universitą di Pavia, Itįlia - http://members.xoom.virgilio.it/Shib/calendar.htm  & http://lettere.unipv.it/SETH/calendar.htm  - (July 2003)

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          "... This star-map actually describes a planetary conjunction in which the planet position is defined to a certain sector of the sky, plus a solar eclipse. As such, precise astronomical calculation can date this map to the date, May, 1534 BCE (Ove von Spaeth, "Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map", International Journal of the History of Science, Centaurus, vol 42:3 (2000):159-179) ...".

Robert D. Mock, MD, - http://biblesearchers.com/catastrophes/catastrophes6.shtml  - & - robertmock@biblesearchers.com  - (1 July 2003)

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          "... Remarks about the appearance of Mars in the tomb of Senenmut in western Thebes - (concerning:) An article recently published in this journal by Ove von Spaeth (2000) - ...are based on a wrong assumption ...". *

Christian Leitz, Dr. Professor, Seminar für Ägyptologie, Universität zu Köln, - Centaurus, Vol. 44, Issue 1-2, pp.140-143 - (July 2002)

          (* See: Notice, below)

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          "Dear Colleague, - dating the Egyptian star map conveys materials we would not otherwise have, we appreciate it. (Will be passed on later to the Oriental Institute library) ...".

Robert D. Biggs, Professor, Ed., Journal of Near Eastern Studies, Oriental Institute, University of Chicago - (12 October 2001)

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          "... Датировка старейшей египетской звездной карты  ..." etc., - (quotation from the Russian text translates:) - "...it (Ove von Spaeth's paper) was also examined in the light of the history of astronomy. The author, just as Fomenko, approaches the task in terms of farfetched conceptions of Egyptian astronomical symbolism, as well as the author entertains his own particular ideas about "correct chronology". Besides, it shows too that the author lies concerning the astronomical calculations of the planets..." - (In addition, Gusjev quotes hearsay from Conman and van Gent; cf. notice, below). *

Dimitrij Gusjev  - http://hbar.phys.msu.su/gorm/wwwboard/messages47/17702.html  - (2 October 2002)

          (* See: Notice, below)

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          "... a pleasure to announce that the work on Dating The Oldest Egyptian Star Map has just been published by Anistoriton - providing the readers of this Journal a selection of the news of the article published in the electronic version (Vol. 6/2002, Issue V 021) ... Congratulations and thank you for the permission ...".

D.I. Loizos, Professor in History, Editor-in Chief, Anistoriton History, Archaeology, & ArtHistory Journal, (ISSN 1108-4081), www.anistor.co.hol.gr/english/enback/v021.htm   & http://users.hol.gr/~dilos/anistor/vpoints/v021.htm  - (7 March 2002)

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           "... STAR-MAP:  New orientating discoveries in the world's oldest star map in a 3500 years old Egyptian tomb - presented through historian Ove von Spaeth's research - revealing informative and precise astronomical data of great importance to ancient Egyptian chronology. ( http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut-files_survey_en.asp ) ..."

OPT Astronomy Optcorp, Oceanside, Ca 92054, - www.optcorp.com - & - www.optcorp.com/links.asp - (26.Feb.2004)

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         "... I'm most impressed by the accuracy of the dating. Not of the map... but of the original chronology that Egyptologists had long-established for dynastic times. Just goes to show... good theory will be supported by future evidence. ..."

Anthony, - Ancient History and Archaeology, "The Hall of Ma'at" - Re: One for the astronomers ? (IP Logged) - www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21410#msg-21410 Date:January16,2002 11:06AM Forum List,Message List - (16 January 2002)

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           "... The Oldest Egyptian Star Map - the Senmut map Dating information decoded. A presentation of newly discovered data of special importance to Egyptology, ancient history, and astronomy - and, typically, studies of chronology - as well as related culture and science of Egypt's 18th dynasty and ancient Near East. - Being published in Ove von Spaeth's treatise on "Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map". The data concerned have been revealed by a thorough examination of one of the most unique Egyptian celestial decoration ...".

Ancient Egyptian Maps, B2B sites, - www.b2byellowpages.com/search/ search.cgi?textfield=Ancient%20Egypt%20Map - (autumn 2004)

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          "... Although general merit can be given to his [OvS's] interpretation of the ceiling (of which he received widespread accolades from numerous and notable peers), there are concerns about the dataset he used ... is confirmed using Starry Night Pro software ... but we can be sure such an eclipse could have been an early root from which later generations of priests drew reverence ...". *

R. Avry Wilson, The Official Graham Hancock Website: Discussion Forum, The Mysteries - The 64th Controversy VI, - ( avry@telusplanet.net ) & http://members.fortunecity.com/ravrywilson/senmut.htm - (autumn 2003) & post 153270: www.grahamhancock.com/phorum/read.php?f=1&i=153270&t=153270 - (20 December 2003)

          (* See: Notice, below)

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         "... I have read with interest information provided on your website concerning the research of the Senmut star-map and its probable relation to Moses. You suggest the map describes a real astronomical observation ........ As I am writing a book on the chronology of Jesus Christ, my interest was drawn to what seems a conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter in the very year that an eclipse of the sun occurred over Egypt. - (My research shows two possible dates for the [such kind of] solar eclipse, one retro-calculation with "Voyager" software came up with June 1, 1478 BC; the other, Julian date August 23, 1463BC) ...".

Don Leichel, New Zealand - exalto@clear.net.nz - (15 November 2005)

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           "... Ancient Star Charts: The word "star" comes from the Greek term meaning heavenly body; - Bronze Age 'star chart' found March 2nd ; - Lascaux, France, 17,000 years ago: in star pictures of the Pleiades; - Prehistoric Star Maps Identified In France And Spain; -
          New Discovery  in Ancient Egyptian Star Map ( http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut-files_survey_en.asp ) ...".

Ellie Crystal, - Metaphysical and Science Website, Created and Designed by Ellie Crystal. - Copyright 1995-2001, - http://www.crystalinks.com/ - Ancient Star Maps - (5.Mar.2001)

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          "... I have read your article "Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map" with great interest. I agree with your conclusions as to the general positions in the sky of the planets, the sun and the moon and the general dating of the configuration. - I find that there is really a solar eclipse at a time that is very close to the one you state, but provided the time is ephemeris time. - Actually there is no safe way of extrapolating that far back in time but the correction (ephemeris time to universal time) would be accurate to within +/- some hours ...".

Lars Gislén, D.Sc., Professor, Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Lund - (12 September 2000)

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          "... I find your work on the Senmut star map most interesting ...".

John Anthony West, Egyptologist, author and explorer, New York, http://www.jawest.com/ - (31 March 2002)

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          "... I am not sure there would be enough information given on the ceilings to identify a date if this is what the ceilings represent ..."
          "... inconsistent with the ancient Egyptian culture. ...The Egyptians routinely expressed abstract ideas using pictures. There are messages hidden in every day Egyptian art by incorporating hieroglyphs into designs. ... Figures that have been taken to be constellations may just as likely represent abstract ideas. I do not read too much into the placement of planets in this art ...". *

Joanne Conman, Maine, - History of Astronomy Discussion Group, http://wvnvm.wvnet.edu/htbin/listarch?hastro-l&a:scmcc.archives - (No.183, 21 January 2002)

          (* See: Notice, below)

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          "... The redating of the Senmut ceiling star map appears to be one of the first victims of the author's chronological adjustments and I fear that several more will follow in the near future ...". *

Robert H. van Gent, Dr., Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Utrecht University, - History of Astronomy Discussion Group, http://wvnvm.wvnet.edu/htbin/listarch?hastro-l&a:scmcc.archives - (No.179, 21 January 2002)

          (* See: Notice, below)

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           "... Egyptologists were able to date that this particular configuration of planets occurred in the sky in 1534 BC, - cf. von Spaeth, (Centaurus, 2000). ..."

Bojan Novakovic, astronomer, - in his treatise 'Senenmut: an ancient Egyptian astronomer', Publ. of the Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade, vol.85, - (Oct.2008).

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          "... When considering the existence of an original star chart that indicates the occurrence of a solar eclipse 3500 years ago, one should be allowed to focus one's attention on the closest - chronologically and geographically - solar eclipse that actually occurred. Why else would the indication of a solar eclipse be inserted into a star chart?
          The thesis on Senmut's star chart has raised an interesting discussion. - Ove von Spaeth, you have engendered quite a row among astronomers.
          If nothing else, your work will lead to some interesting clarifications - which is more than most books have managed to achieve. ..."

Jurij Moskvitin, mathematician, philosopher, writer, -  22270-010 Rio de Janeiro, Botafogo, Brazil - (9 January 2003)

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          "... A closely-reasoned scientific article that explores the implications and significance of an unusual configuration of planets and stars represented on an ancient Egyptian star map - the Senmut Star Map. His approach - a combination of modern astronomical and mathematical evidence with archaeological materials and Egyptology - allows for a fuller understanding of the development of astronomy in ancient Egypt and to provide important chronological evidence. Ove von Spaeth's article takes a thoughtful and reflective leap in this direction and brings startling new light upon the skies of the Senmut star map. ..."

Anu Kumar, Ph.D. in English Literature, Pittsburgh University, and M.A. in Sanskrit Studies, Copenhagen University - (9.Oct.2011).

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          "... ho letto un articolo che tratta della datazione delle decorazioni della tomba. - Secondo questo studio, pubblicato da Ove von Spaeth nel 2000, la posizione dei pianeti e delle stelle raffigurati in quella tomba permetterebbe di datarla in modo precisissimo. Si tratterebbe del 7 maggio del 1534 avanti Cristo:  http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut-files_survey_en.asp  & http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut1-mapdate_en.asp .
          - Qui, nella sezione "downloading" si puņ scaricare il file PDF con l'articolo illustrato: http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut3-treatise_en.asp ...".

Diego Coughi, Trystero, it.scienza.astronomia, - diego.trystero(at)gmail.com - www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34408.html - (14.Jul.2005)

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           "...  By using astronomical approach on the ancient Senmut star map, Ove von Spaeth computed and verified the presence of distinctive planetary conjunctions represented as a factual occurrence in the sky. This allowed the calculation of an exact dating of its time and thus the period in Egyptian history. ..."

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia -  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ove_von_Spaeth

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           "... the events coincide with the accepted dating methods and chronology; - while also re-interpreting the conclusions derived therewith:  http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut1-mapdate_en.asp#5 (and  http://www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut4-history_en.asp ) ..."

Stephanie Michelle, Soror Samhain - Practicus 3=8, Copyright 1999 or 5759 common era  -  http://groups.msn.com/GuildoftheProphets/moses.msnw  -  (1999, & 2000)

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          "I have purchased your paper, 'Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map', from Centaurus Magazine via Blackwell. We are preparing a special exhibition about astronomy. I am the Acting Head of the Department of Astronomy at The Kroppedal Museum (formerly The Ole Roemer Museum). The main subject of this department is in general the history of Danish astronomy  (Tycho Brahe, Ole Roemer, etc.), however, we are also engaged in ancient natural science and cosmology. With greatest interest I have read your paper on the dating of the Star Map from the tomb of Senmut."

Jakob Danneskiold-Samsųe, Leading Curator, Department of Astronomy, Kroppedal Museum, (DK-2630 Taastrup), - astronomi@kroppedal.dk  -  www.kroppedal.dk  -  (27.Apr.2006)

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          "... when people like Owen Gingerich, whom I greatly respect as an astronomical historian, appear to endorse something astronomically historical, I tend to sit up and take notice. I have just emailed him about this and will report back here if I get a reply (busy man, so it may be a while). ..."
          "... I also had a look at the ( www.moses-egypt.net/images/Senmut_conjunction2.jpg ) chart for May 1534BC on www.moses-egypt.net/star-map/senmut-survey_en.asp . Although the planetary positions are correct, there is again the problem of this being an eclipse that was ( www.astunit.com/astrocrud/BC1534May06eclipse.jpg ) only visible on the other side of the world. - The difference in one day between my date for it and that of the authors is that I am using UT and they are presumably using local time at Luxor. ..." *

Stephen Tonkin, astronomer, writer, - Ancient History and Archaeology, "The Hall of Ma'at" - Re: One for the astronomers ? (IP Logged) - www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21937#msg-21937 Date: January 19, 2002 08:53AM - & - www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21906#msg-21906 Date: January 19, 2002 07:07AM - (19 January 2002)

          (* See: Notice, below)

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          "I found Ove von Spaeth's page on Senmut's Star Map very interesting. - It's also interesting that von Spaeth suggested that the map indicated a "specific point in time"; on that I agree because it's something the Ancients would do.
          Why in this living world, on the other hand, von Spaeth would include a series of responses on the subject from the-hall-of-maat (net discussiongroup) - I cannot imagine. I also loved the choice comment by Owen Gingerich:  Quote: "... the [von Spaeth's] findings are very ingenious and admirable, ..."  "

James Gillette, - http://ahatmose2002.proboards22.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=200   -  (9 September 2006)

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          "Without any knowledge of astronomy I am nevertheless convinced that from an Egyptological point of view the paper by Mr. Ove von Spaeth contains new and valuable information concerning the date of Senmut's star map."

Erik Iversen, Dr.Phil.h.c., Egyptologist, formerly the University of Copenhagen - (20 January 1997)

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          "The resulting date of Senmut's star map, objectively proven by the author on an astronomical basis, adds, in my opinion, a considerable contribution to the debate concerning the Egyptian chronology."

Kristian Peder Moesgaard, D.Sc., Professor, History of Science Department, Aarhus University; - Director of the Steno Museum, Denmark's National Museum for the History of Science, Aarhus - (10 February 1997)

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A further number of acknowledgements, Notice, disputes, and questions, from e.g.:

- Sebastian Richter, Dr., Ägyptologisches Institut, Universität Leipzig (21.Sep.00 & 17.Oct.00);  - Lisa Montago Leahy, Ed., The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Department of Ancient History and Archaeology, The University of Birmingham (20.Sep.00);  - Rolf Krauss, Dr., Ägyptisches Museum und Papyrussammlung, Berlin (5.Oct.99);  - Amanda McCaig, Ed., Astronomy & Geophysics, The Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society, University of Leeds (9.Sep.00);  - Mike Levad, Developer, The Franklin Institute Science Museum, Philadelphia (7.May.02);  - Dave Eicher, Astronomer, Ed.: Astronomy Magazine, Wausheska, Wisconsin (24.Feb.2003);  - Margaret Rossiter, History of Science Educator, Ed.: Isis Journal of the History of Science Society, Cornell University, NY (5.May.02);  - etc. - Tanks to all for their interest.

Sidetop

In this celestial sector the pattern of the placing of certain planets indicated the dating of Senmut's star map
SOME ANSWERS AND NEW DEVELOPMENTS
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Author's Notes

::  Comments.  - Debate and criticism are indispensable to science and research. Acknowledgements and critic from esteemed scientists, scholars, and other experts and authorities have been productive in the actual case, indeed. However, the invaluable asset of criticism can be misdirected by incorrect quotations from the paper under discussion, and even by "references" to strange statements, which the treatise never has contained. But once entered into the debate, such tend to remain in circulation.

          Some of the skeptics (all not quoted above) wish to present a somewhat different result (concerning a solar eclipse) based on their calculations from certain formulae - e.g. in "The Nautical Almanac", or PC astronomy-programmes - but without knowing the existence of alternative formulae: differences of these formulae are due to hitherto unsolved problems concerning the Delta-T factors. Besides, the opponents inexpediently disregard the fact that in the treatise the in reality interesting conditions of a solar eclipse (or the eclipse itself) are not at all treated as a factor as regards the basic dating of this star map.
          Among the critics, some are concerned with alleged Egyptological problems which in fact are non-existent - and they ignore that the treatise's star map elements contain identifications which previously have been recognized, especially in Neugebauer & Parker's authoritative work "Egyptian Astronomical Texts, I-III".

          A problem appears to occur because some of the critics openly substitute their own opinions and considerations for concrete facts and data. - Furthermore, they forget that the treatise on Senmut's Star Map is published in the esteemed "Centaurus International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science, and Technology". Prior to publication in this journal, as required, the treatise has been peer-reviewed by experts.
          - The same rules and principles apply to "Aristoriton Journal of History, Archaeology and ArtHistory", which published parts of the treatise. Here too, peer-review is performed by specialists in the relevant fields and/or topics, and further, is read one more time by the Editorial Board.
          In addition, authorities on the history of astronomy and Egyptology: - Professor Owen Gingerich, Harvard-Smithsonian Institute (11.Oct.2001), - Sir Patrick Moore, D.Sc., Astronomer, BBC Science editor (15.Sep.2000), - and Professor Dr. Erik Hornung, Basel Universitaet (24.Oct.2001), - all with a special knowledge and long-term interest concerning the Senmut star map - have acknowledged, independently and voluntarily, the star map dating project and the value of what it suggests. They, and the many others, welcome the work as a promising proposal for a solution and do not speak about any "truth" about something having taking place 3500 years ago - whereas the opponents are expressing their own critic ("this is completely impossible" ... etc.) as being the very truth and with no doubts. And note that no skeptics have proven any calculation wrong concerning the treatise's general positions in the sky for the Sun, Moon, and the planets - these are all correct and unambiguous. 

          In any case, comprehensive answers are presented by our web site page:  FAQ: Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map  (cf. paragraphs 3 and 5) - and in addition some special comments below.
          From the libraries' article-bases, copies (xerox, etc.) of the treatise can be requested from the issue of Centaurus with the reference No. ISSN 0008-8994 : "Centaurus International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science, and Technology", Vol. 42;3, 2000, pp 159-179. - Or the treatise may be downloaded at the web page: "The Senmut Star Map Decoded" .

          Ove von Spaeth    (Dec.2003)

*
Some notices to special cases

Typically three kinds of problems come up by many of the critics who prefer to think that no other valuable  system,  formula,  or tradition  in this relation exists than the only one which the critics themselves first had happen to be acquainted with long ago.
          It might be productive to re-examine this basis before they are problematizing their own reaction to the new perspectives:


CONCERNING  R. Avry Wilson, (of 20.Dec.2003, cf. above):
- A discussion group being housed by well-respected Graham Hancock web site, was introduced to R. Avry Wilson's considerations (20.Dec.2003) concerning the Senmut map. Wilson has computed the data from OvS' treatise and obtained some strange results - because he used his Starry Night Pro Software. Wilson seems to observe the belief that this is far better than using e.g. the big scale computers on those universities where scientists in several cases have spoken in favour of the treatise.
          Thus, in the case of the planet's sky positions 3,500 years ago, his experiment was bound to go wrong - and, consequently, was impossible to build a hypothesis on, but he did it anyway. Unfortunately, he uncritically considered new literature in this field automatically to be the best and previous literature to be outdated, which is absolutely not the case when dealing with fundamental planetary formula theory. It is true that the Delta-T problem is not solved - but this is exactly the case in his Starry Night Pro Software!
          Wilson should have started, instead, with studying planetary computing problems (obtaining a high precision here is extremely more complicated than in case of the stars), cf. paragraphs 1-4 in FAQ: Dating the Oldest Egyptian Star Map . - When future computer power and computations will continue to improve, they will not move the basic results of the treatise, they can only strengthen them.
_


CONCERNING  Gusjev, (of 2.Oct.2002, cf. above):
          - A somewhat strange criticism (Gusjev, 2.Oct.2002, part not quoted) cites the impossibility of a "total solar eclipse", in spite of the fact that the treatise does not mention a total eclipse.
As stated elsewhere several times in the texts of Ove von Spaeth, this eclipse means nothing for the exactness of the dating, and is of no significance for the basic dating of this star map. In the paper it was only natural to present a suggestion for dating the eclipse, and it was based on calculation by the best astronomical programmes.
          In any case, the general positions in the sky for the Sun, Moon, and all the planets are correct and unambiguous.
          The ancient Egyptians were able to calculate several astronomical events. The paper presents that the Senmut star map indicates a solar eclipse at a distance of approx. 10 degrees of arc from the Sirius-star meridian. In several respects it is a most interesting fact, though almost nobody seem to care about this and its perspectives but instead about an alleged, possibly more late eclipse to be seen elsewhere after being computed by - in this context - apparently less effective programmes.
          Please note that neither the map nor the paper say anything about annular or total eclipse, and they say nothing about that it is proved it was observed. No more, no less.
_


CONCERNING  Christian Leitz, (of July 2002, in Centaurus Magazine, cf. above):
          - On the aforementioned FAQ-page: the Paragraphs 7, 8, and 9 covers the questions concerning Christian Leitz (July 2002). Christian Leitz has earlier tried, in vain, to solve the enigma of the Senmut Star Map (just like Joachim Friedrich Quack, 2.Oct.2001, cf. above - in his way - also have tried). Unfortunately, Leitz' disagreeing article abandons sound scholarship and methodology concerning his total disregard of the important material of the astronomical clues in Ove von Spaeth's treatise.
          Their problem emerge because of the way of Senmut's handling the elements in the structure of his star map. Senmut did so in several cases - e.g. concerning Mars and also the eclipse - by maintaining the tradition and at the same time expanding its ability of expression: A quite normal feature, as the Egyptians practised extended play on words (more than in any other known culture) and multiple meanings of hieroglyphic texts, and in this field Senmut is famous as the great master.
          When Leitz tries to argue that some of the paper's points are against tradition, it is a circularity of no meaning, because it is exactly what the paper itself suggests but on grounds of the rationale behind Senmut's inventive construction of his star map and the fact that Senmut was a pioneer extending and renewing tradition.

          Leitz' claim about missing the planet Mars as depicted as a falcon is unrealistic, because the falcon issue was in use some hundred years later than Senmut - as Leitz very well should know. Indeed, it has no foundation when Leitz is using the lack of a Mars-falcon in the Senmut Map to support his total rejection of Mars being present there.
          To form an opinion on facts presented may take some more insight and experience of historical astronomy than being mobilized in his article. Thus, it should be respected that astronomy basically is an exact science which often may have less in common with the Humanities' manner of interpretations: Leitz ignores completely that the treatise's exact statistics of 2000 years of the planetary conjunctions fit precisely and unambiguously to the Senmut map and to some equal maps as well (the exact facts and data are presented in the treatise's Paragraph 6 and Table 1 and 2).
          Furthermore, Leitz treats one of the common provisional models of the chronology as if it were a historical "truth". The real truth is that a consensus (Leitz, page 140, expression: "... generally accepted") can never constitute any proof of scientific validity.
          Leitz states that "... all the calculations of von Spaeth are based on a wrong assumption (presence of Mars in a retrograde movement)." False !, the treatise's main argument is the importance of the very conjunction of planets - exactly depicted without Mars - around the Sirius meridian as shown openly and directly on the map. Regarded from any experienced astronomer's point of view it is the very logical solution which, by the way, nobody had ever suggested before Ove von Spaeth's treatise.
          In his article Leitz has not yet proven anything at all. And the unacceptable number of unfounded statements weakens the article. And its conclusive remarks exclude, in reality, all Egyptologists who do not happen to agree with Leitz' opinion - and among these one of the world's finest experts (appreciated in OvS's treatise for his counsel and support). Demonstrating, too, the impossible problem of trying to contradict the treatise when the reading of it thus has shown to be somewhat sporadic.
_


CONCERNING  Stephen Tonkin, (of 19.Jan.2002, parts of his text not quoted above):
          - The eclipse question is being answered several times, but astronomer Stephen Tonkin also writes (04:34am) that "... it does not explain, why the position of Saturn (perhaps the easiest planet to calculate) is so wrong ...". But he (07:07am) appreciates Owen Gingerich as the great authority, which has endorsed Ove von Spaeth's treatise.
          And in the treatise in question there are - besides results of astronomical calculations supported by modern computer power - also reference to results of Owen Gingerich & William Stahlman: "Solary and Planetary Longitudes for the Years -2500 to +2000 by 10-Day Intervals" (Madison 1963).
          It is a fact that the 1963-conditions (for the book) were more advanced than normally thought of today, i.e. the calculations were made by the most expanded, advanced, and detailed planet programmes executed by enormous computers as of the great research centres and universities - being far better than the present "dinky" star programmes in more "normal" computers (as being used by Stephen Tonkin and colleagues).
          Thus, concerning the alleged problem with Saturn, Stephen Tonkin has not discovered that Gingerich/Stahlman's book/table shows exactly the same result as being stated in the treatise.

          Hasty decisions as to declare that the position of Saturn is wrong, and by only base this on that the treatise's calculations showing otherwise than one's own calculations do, is - with all respect - a practice of non-valid scientifically conduct and, more so, it is absurd to publish before thoroughly reconsidering.
          The same goes for the statement about certain ancient observation methods as being merely myths. (Cf. when astronomer Gerald Hawkins and mathematician engineer Alexander Thom (after investigating some 300 sites) proved the today accepted fact, that it was not myths that Stonehenge and many other prehistoric megalithic circles, alignments, and isolated standing stones were ingeniously constructed astronomical markers and calculators, - many archaeologists and historians became furious).
          Once more it must be emphasized, that by dealing with such delicate problems and going 3,500 years back in time: don't use "normal" star programmes, even those of good quality and reputation, but only use the most detailed special programmes (which, unfortunately, are not distributed for sale normally).
_


CONCERNING  Conman and van Gent, (of 21.Jan.2002, cf. above):
          - Two of the contributions above - from Joanne Conman and van Gent (both: 21.Jan.2002) - from an international Newsgroup for the History of Astronomy are joining the discussions on the internet among researchers, scholars, and scientists concerning Ove von Spaeth's scientific treatise on dating the world's oldest star map. About 25 different letters relating this matter were distributed world-wide to all members of the group during the first months of 2002.
          Unfortunately, solely based on accounts and comments the two contributors' remarks also contain serious misunderstandings. They have stated their mere opinions, all right. They 'think', and 'suppose', and 'assume', and using hearsay - but present no concrete facts and data.
Besides from appearing not to be too well informed or experienced on the special points in this special case, they pronounce their verdict in absentia  having never proven nor documented any error in the paper in question - and yet their newsgroup-talk later has been incompetently referred to as if the opinions here were a real "source". In their own letters Conman & van Gent admit neglecting to consult the primary source, i.e. they had never read the original text/treatise. (For instance, it is presented here: The Senmut Star Map Decoded ).

*

Ove von Spaeth    (Dec.2003)

 
Egyptian water clock made as a ceramical container, adorned with a star map structured celestial arrangement on the outside (from 18th dynasty)
 
Sidetop
SCIENTIFIC LIBRARIES - &  NEWS- AND DISCUSSION-GROUPS ON THE STAR MAP TREATISE
- evt. praktisk at kunne lęse teksten off-line
Discussions, News, - and Scientific Libraries


Central Libraries by International Scientific Institutions

Although the "Centaurus International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science, and Technology" (established 1950/51) is highly appreciated and received all over the world, in that perspective the number of issues is relatively limited. - Among the following options some may be of use:
         An offprint-issue of Ove von Spaeth's paper (origin. publ. in Centarus, vol. 42, 2000) on the Senmut star map, and with a FAQ-list attached, is accessible world wide at several central libraries by scientific institutions. Some of them being represented here:


-  Historical Astronomy Division of the American Astronomical Society, Washington DC, -
Louisiana State University, Department of Physics and Astronomy, - http://www.aas.org/~had/biblio.html  - & -  http://www.aas.org/~had/ASTRO22.html

-  Oriental Institute, University of Chicago, Research Archives, -  www.oilib.uchicago.edu/oilibcat.html
- & -  www.oi.uchicago.edu/OI/DEPT/RA/Research_Arch_Guide.html

- La Bibliothčque d'Égyptologie, Collčge de France, Paris, Cabinet d'Égyptologie, - www.egyptologues.net/pdf/bibliotheque/acquisitions2001.pdf

- Biblioteca de Humanidades de la Facultad de Geografķa e Historia de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain, - www.ucm.es/info/antigua/gerion/g2001Publicaciones.htm

- The Welcome Library for the History and Understanding the Medicine, London, - http://library.wellcome.ac.uk/resources/ cw/archive/oct00-synopsis.rtf 

- Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art, University of Oxford, England, - www.absoluteastronomy.com/reference/research_laboratory_for_archaeology_and_the_history_of_art

- Library of Specula Vaticana (Vatican Observatory), Castel Gandolfo - V-00120 Cittą del Vaticano
Italy, - (via) http://clavius.as.arizona.edu/vo/R1024/Headq.html

- The Harvard-Smithsonian Institution, Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge Mass., - http://cfa-www.harvard.edu/sao-home.html

- History of Science Department, University of Aarhus, Denmark, - http://www.nat.au.dk/default.asp?id=88&la=UK

- Department of Theoretical Physics, University of Lund, Sweden, - http://www.thep.lu.se

- Danish National Library of Science and Medicine, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, - http://www.dnlb.dk

- British Library, London, England - also presented by print: Imago Mundi (History of Cartography) Bibliography, JSTOR Collection: Arts & Sciences Complement, 2001 vol. & vol. 2003 vol., - http://links.jstor.org/journals/03085694.html

-  -  -  Libraries of Universities  of - Cracow, Moscow, Beijing, and Tokyo, etc.
-  -  -  Libraries of other Scientific institutions of history, astronomy, and Egyptology, in a great number, e.g. in Germany, Belgium, Southafrica and Egypt (Library of the Luxor Museum).

*
On Continued Debates

Discussions by News-groups and Discussions-groups:
_

1)  - Debate on the Senmut map/Ove von Spaeth's treatise - discussion groups, in ENGLISH (altogether approx. 12 mess.):
"The Hall of Ma'at" - Ancient History and Archaeology - Re: One for the astronomers? - http://www.hallofmaat.com

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21406#msg-21406  - January 16, 2002 10:31AM (John Wall)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21410#msg-21410  - January 16, 2002 11:06AM (Anthony)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21419#msg-21419  - January 16, 2002 12:06PM (Stephen Tonkin)

... 21930#msg-21806 , Jan.18,02 pm03:00(Dave Moore),... 21930#msg-2193 , Jan.19,02 am08:19(St.Tonkin) ...

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21906#msg-21906  - January 19, 2002 07:07AM (Stephen Tonkin)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21909#msg-21909  - January 19, 2002 07:31AM (John Wall)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21937#msg-21937  - January 19, 2002 08:53AM (Stephen Tonkin)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21956#msg-21956  - January 19, 2002 09:47AM (John Wall)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,21961#msg-21961  - January 19, 2002 10:18AM (Stephen Tonkin)

http://www.hallofmaat.com/read.php?1,21406,22113#msg-22113  - January 20, 2002 04:34AM (Stephen Tonkin)
_


2)  - Debate on the Senmut map/Ove von Spaeth's treatise - discussion groups, in ENGLISH (altogether approx. 25 mess.):

"HASTRO-L" - Archive of the History of Astronomy Discussion Group, the mailing list for scholars in this field: mb@astunit.com 
=> http://wvnvm.wvnet.edu/htbin/listarch?hastro-l&a:scmcc.archives  or http://listserv.wvu.edu/archives/hastro-l.html - start with the Jan-2002 archive:


          The discussion began (the very first message determinated where there is no "RE:" in the Subject line) on Jan 19th 2002 by mb@astunit.com  etc. => "Stephan Tonkin" etc.
- it is msg 145 for the month of January 2002,

- => and the next: 148 mb@astunit.com  01/19/2002 13:17:03 The Senmut ceiling star map  - ... e.g. Messages Nos. ... (some of van Gent's and Conman's msg:) ... 165 ... 179 ... 183 ... 187... etc., ...

          Several contributions are pro - fully or to some degree - the von Spaeth line. Above, the HASTRO-L quotations of 'contra' forms are exposed from "worst cases" only. - Altogether the exchange of messages - approx. 25 mails - continued in February and March 2002 also.
_

 
3)  - Debate on the Senmut map/Ove von Spaeth's treatise - discussion groups, in RUSSIAN (altogether approx. 8 mess.):

http://hbar.phys.msu.su/gorm/wwwboard/voprchr/981745387.htm  - 09 February 2001 at 22:03:07 (Zdhems, Dist)

http://hbar.phys.msu.su/gorm/wwwboard/messages47/17700.html  - 02 October 2002 at 00:36:15

http://hbar.phys.msu.su/gorm/wwwboard/messages47/17702.html  - 02 October 2002 at 01:26:59 (Dimitrij Gusjev)

http://hbar.phys.msu.su/gorm/wwwboard/messages64/25510.html  - 18 April 2003  at 17:24:04

_


4)  - Debate on the Senmut map/Ove von Spaeth's treatise - by other groups, in ENGLISH (altogether approx. 20 mess.:

"The Official Graham Hancock Website": Discussion Forum, The Mysteries - The 64th Controversy VI :
http://www.grahamhancock.com/phorum/read.php?f=1&i=153270&t=153270
          This specific discussion began 20 December 2003 at 02:58 by R. Avry Wilson ( avry@telusplanet.net ) post 153270, &  http://members.fortunecity.com/ravrywilson/senmut.htm


=> the thread concerning the Senmut star map and Ove von Spaeth was continued by Cesar ( CesarNostradamus@aol.com  ) post 153588, 24 December 2003 at 04:42 with http://www.grahamhancock.com/phorum/read.php?f=1&i=153588&t=153270  ...etc. => ... 15703 ... 157209 ... 15803 ... 15909... etc., ... - approx. 20 mails - continuing in January 2004 also.

_


5)  - Debate on the Senmut map/Ove von Spaeth's treatise - discussion groups, in ITALIAN (altogether approx. 8 mess.):

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34408.html  - 14 July 2005 at 14:36:04 (Trystero & Diego Coughi)

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34410.html  - 14 July 2005 at 17:42:36 (Sao & Diego Coughi)

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34414.html  - 14 July 2005 at 16:31:33 (Trystero & Diego Coughi)

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34428.html  - 14 July 2005 at 22:08:27 (Sao & Diego Coughi)

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34433.html  - 14 July 2005 at 21:31:33 (Trystero & Diego Coughi)

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34459.html  - 15 July 2005 at 20:21:01 (Trystero & Diego Coughi)

http://www.newsland.it/nr/browse/it.scienza.astronomia/34463.html  - 16 July 2005 at 08:30:05 (Sao & Diego Coughi)

_


6)   - Debate on the Senmut map/Ove von Spaeth's treatise - discussion groups,  in ENGLISH
(new thread):


"Searching-For-Truth", Discussiongroup, A group for the path of truth. Google Groups Beta. *Yahoo! Groups Links*. Subject: [spirit_truths] An Egyptian Star-map, by Ove von Spaeth, Independent Scholar, Denmark. Find messages -
http://groups.google.com/group/Searching-For-Truth/browse_thread/thread/a608a38df697da79/892afc7bc85e9751?lnk=st&q=&rnum=1&hl=en#892afc7bc85e9751  -  12 May 2006 at 02:33 (Jeff Watts)



... The very Debate about the Senmut starmap is continuing on the Internet on several other web-sites ...

 

Russian site on Ove von Spaeth's treatise
*
Sidetop
ON HISTORY:
- evt. praktisk at kunne lęse teksten off-line
Apart from the analysis: a Moses relation possible?


The Dating of the Senmut Star Map containing time correlation with the Moses era

The actual analysis of the Senmut star map follows its own objective purpose: to be concerned with only the dating of the ancient Egyptian star map and without any dependence of whatever the result could be used for in other connections.
          However, Ove von Spaeth's treatise, published in "Centaurus" (42;3, 2000), with scientific documentation for the dating of Egypt's oldest star map, has been re-edited to be used by non-astronomers.
          The said version was later published also in the appendix in Volume 2 of Ove von Spaeth's book-series ("Assassinating Moses", vols. 1-5) about the historical Moses. Unusual many and very strong indications suggest that the Senmut star map is being of a special contemporarity with Moses and his era; cf.  Debate on Vol. 2 , and  Vol. 2 Inform , and not least "On History".

Sidetop

 

Extended Debate on the Treatise - &
*
Extended Debate on the Treatise - (a)
*
Extended Debate on the Treatise - (b)
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Extended Debate on the Treatise - (c)
*
Extended Debate on the Treatise - (d)
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Zodiacal star gods of Greek-Babylonian influence in the ceiling of Egyptian Temple,
Ptolemaic era (ca. 305--30 BC).



From gigantic cosmos to micro molecules
(source: R.Lyra)
*


 

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Senmut page 5  (Sky tradition)
 

 
 



 
 
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A special treasure of knowledge and wisdom of Greece, Rome, and the Renaissance had originated in Ancient Egypt - and was here known to connect also with the historical Moses' dramatic fate and mystery.
          Ove von Spaeth has written an intriguing, new-orientating work presenting this still influential background of our civilization. His interdisciplinary research on history, archaeology, and anthropology goes deeply into Egyptian tradition, history of religion, initiation cults, star-knowledge, and mythology - relating to biblical studies, the Rabbinical Writings, and the authors of Antiquity. Each volume offers unique insights not presented before.
          Special information is presented by clicking on the individual cover illustrations:

(ed.note: reading the orientation is highly recommended. The books are being translated into English)
News about the book-series: www.moses-egypt.net - & - Interest Group for The Ove von Spaeth Papers




 
 
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INTEREST GROUP FOR THE OVE VON SPAETH PAPERS

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Interest Group for The Ove von Spaeth Papers

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