Records of Halley's comet on Babylonian tablets

  title={Records of Halley's comet on Babylonian tablets},
  author={Francis Richard Stephenson and Kevin Kam Ching Yau and Hermann Hunger},
The late Babylonian texts in the British Museum are shown to contain probable observations of Halley's comet at both its 164 BC and 87 BC apparitions. These texts have important bearing on the orbital motion of the comet in the ancient past. 

Astronomical Dating of Babylonian Texts Describing the Total Solar Eclipse of S.E. 175

The Late Babylonian astronomical texts (LBAT) are of considerable astronomical and historical importance. For instance, some of the earliest reliable sightings of Halley's Comet (in both 164 and 87

A Catalogue of Greco-Roman Comets from 500 B.C. to A.D. 400

Our knowledge of ancient comets for the period under review is derived from three bodies of evidence: (1) from the so-called astronomical diaries preserved on fragmentary clay tablets found in

Comets, Historical Records and Vedic Literature

A verse in Book One of the Rigveda mentions a cosmic tree with rope-like aerial roots held up in the sky. Such an imagery might have ensued from the appearance of a comet having a ‘tree stem’-like

Possible Kreutz Sungrazing Comets Found in Historical Records

In historical records, twenty four candidates of possible Kreutz sungrazing comets have been found, and their times of perihelion passage estimated. Translated original records of comets with

Astronomical Imagery in a Passage of Homer

Comet Halley has come and gone yet again, and in its wake we find many new books on comets. Most of these books contain a section on comet lore and history. Here the reader is frequently told that

Aurorae: The earliest datable observation of the aurora borealis

The Late Babylonian astronomical texts, discovered at the site of Babylon (32.5°N, 44.4°E) more than a century ago, contain what is probably the earliest reliable account of the aurora borealis. A

Comments on two possible references to comets in the old testament

Abstract In a search for possible references to comets in the Old Testament, we found two candidates, one from the time of David and one from the time of Isaiah. Although no firm conclusions can be

Comets, Charisma, and Celebrity: Reflections on Their Deep Impact

In celebration of the Deep Impact Mission, this essay explores the influence of comets on the arts and sciences since the beginning of recorded time. Through images, ranging from the sublime to the



Babylonian observational astronomy

  • A. Sachs
  • Physics
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series A, Mathematical and Physical Sciences
  • 1974
The cuneiform texts from ancient Assyria and Babylonia that are preserved offer direct evidence for systematic astronomical observation in two widely separated periods. From the first half of the

A Classification of the Babylonian Astronomical Tablets of the Seleucid Period

  • A. Sachs
  • Physics
    Journal of Cuneiform Studies
  • 1948
I. Summary While hunting through the published astronomical cuneifcrm texts of the Seleucid period for Sirius data, it occurred to me that there is need for a brief sketch cf the types and contents

The light curve of periodic comet Halley 1910 II

Photometric parameters for periodic comet Halley 1910 II have been derived from 144 total visual magnitude estimates. The pre-perihelion data are best represented by an absolute magnitude of 5.47 and

The long-term motion of comet Halley

The orbital motion of comet Halley is numerically integrated back to 1404 BC. Starting with an orbit based on the 1759, 1682, and 1607 observations of the comet, the integration was run back in time

Source parameters of nuclear explosions MILROW and LONGSHOT from teleseismic P waves.

Summary Spectral ratios in the frequency range from 0.5 Hz to 3.0 Hz between underground nuclear explosions MILROW and LONGSHOT have been computed from teleseismic P waves recorded at seven LRSM