Re: Wheels.

From: John Croft
Message: 3984
Date: 2000-09-22

I wrote

> John:
> >Strange that the Sumerians, who could see the heavens clearly and

Glen wrote
> Look, John, stop saying that. It rains alot in Vancouver but
> know what stars look like. Quit the stupidity. There are few places
on earth
> where the stars can't be seen. Get real.

Glen I am being real. To have built up the astronomical-astrological
understanding of the early Sumerians requires a huge amount of
continuous observations over a continuous period. For instance, to
know what is the ratio of the declination of Venus, above and below
the sun, and the length of the period in which the son occults
Venus's view is something that can only be worked out by direct
observation of Venus EVERY NIGHT in its cycle. If it happens that
the clouds obscure the view then accurate understanding is lost. I
don't think you have anything of an accurate understanding of the
sophistication of Sumerian astrological understanding.

I quote for instance from a Fragment of the Table of Contents from
the Sumerian Great Treatise on Astrology, at the Louvre.

"If the moon becomes dark in the evening ...."
"If the sky becomes overcast during an eclipse then...."
"If on the 14th Nisan (The first month of the Mesopotamian year)an
eclipse happens then...."
"If an eclipse happens in Tesrit (the 7th of the Sumerian 12 month
year), then..."
"If an eclipse happens in the evening and lasts on 15th Nisan then
Venus will...."

This deductive divination was based upon historical events that were
associated with specific astronomical events. It was intended as a
warning (i.e. watch out for when the cases where astronomical event X
happened, as that was the period when the Akkadian empire was invaded
by Guti barbarians). It was a whole system of concrete science, and
it was only possible because of a clear view of te heavens. No other
culture developed such a system. Even the Mayans (their only
competitors in this "art") came close to the Sumero-Akkadians for
their atrological complexity.

You say that even people in Vancouver can see the stars. Yes, but
how many accurate astronomical discoveries were created by the
indigenous people of this area?

Glen asked
> The question is whether the numerical system is native Sumerian or
> also from the Ubaid influence. We don't know. That's a groundless
> for your view.

Glen, Ubaid influences ARE Sumerian. The bolae accounting system
found throughout the Ubaid area are the first evidence of a proto-
writing system. They have been shown to be in the Sumerian language!

Glen wrote

> You're crazy. Both the "number system" arguement and the "cloudy
> arguement are both proof of nothing.

Glen take up the argument with the Sumerologists. The number system
and the astrological systems are both related, and relate clearly to
the Sumerians. Perhaps you should add comparitive historical
astronomy to your list of readngs.

> >Even stranger that the Sumerian system of science, for example, as
> > >discussed by Jean Bottero in his essay "Divination and the
> > >Spirit" in his book "Mesopotamia: Writing, Reasoning and the
Gods", >that
> >underpinned this cosmo-mythological system, should have been
>borrowed from
> >an invented Europo-Semitish culture (which has no >archaeological
> >[...]
> No, from a purely _Europoid_ belief existant throughout Anatolia at
> time. So are you saying that the native Sumerians invented
agriculture then?

Glen they didn't invent agriculture, they invented irrigation, which
depended upon water management and a clear understanding of which
season the floods would come. They used the starts to tell them
that. People dependent on rain agriculture don't need that type of