Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

CHAP. XXI.

of the Division of Time. A perpetual Table of New

Moons. The Times of the Birth and Death of
Christ. A Table of remarkable Æras or Events.

[ocr errors]

.

[ocr errors]

THE parts of time are, seconds, minutes, 369.

hours, days, years, cycles, ages, and periods.

370. The original standard, or integral measure A year. of time, is a year; which is determined by the revolution of some celestial body in its orbit, viz. the Sun or Moon.

371. The time measured by the Sun's revolution Tropical in the ecliptic, from any equinox or solstice to the Year: same again, is called the solar or tropical year, which contains 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, 57 seconds; and is the only proper or natural year,

because it always keeps the same seasons to the same months.

372. The quantity of time measured by the Sun's Sidereal revolution as from any fixed star to the same star year. again, is called the sidereal year; which contains 365 days, 6 hours, 9 minutes, 141 seconds, and is 20 minutes 171 seconds longer than the true solar year.

373. The time measured by twelve revolutions of Lunar the Moon from the Sun to the Sun again, is called year. the lunar year; it contains 354 days, 8 hours, 48 minutes, 36 seconds; and is therefore 10 days, 21 hours, 0 minutes, 21 seconds shorter than the solar year. This is the foundation of the epact.

374. The civil year is that which is in common Civit use among the different nations of the world; of year. which, some reckon by the lunar, but most by the solar. The civil solar year contains 365 days, for three years running, which are called common years ; and then comes in what is called the bissextile or

[ocr errors]

Lunar year.

leap-year, which contains 366 days. This is also called the Julian year, on account of Julius Cæsar, who appointed the intercalary day every fourth

year, thinking thereby to make the civil and solar year keep pace together. And this day, being added to the 23d of February, which in the Roman calendar was the sixth of the Calends of March, that sixth day was twice reckoned, or the 23d and 24th were reckoned as one day; and was called Bis sextus dies, and thence came the name bissextile for that

year.

But in our common almanacks this day is added at the end of February

37.5. The civil lunar year is also common or intercalary. The common year consists of 12 lunations, which contain 354 days; at the end of which the year begins again. The intercalary, or embolimic year, is that wherein a month was added to adjust the lunar year to the solar. This method was used by the Jews, who kept their account by the lunar motions. But by intercalating no more than a month of 30 days, which they called Ve-Adar, every third year, they fell 3 days short of the solar year in

that time. Roman 376. The Romans also used the lunar embolimic year.

year at first, as it was settled by Romulus their first king, who made it to consist only of ten months or lunations; which fell 61 days short of the solar year, and so their year became quite vague and unfixed; for which reason they were forced to have a table published by the high-priests, to inform them when the spring and other seasons began. But Julius sar, as already mentioned, § 374, taking this trou. blesome affair into consideration, reformed the calendar, by making the year to consist of 365 days 6

hours. The origi. 377. The year thus settled, is what was used in nal of the

Britain till A. D. 1752: but as it is somewhat more Gregorian

than 11 minutes longer than the solar tropical year, style.

the times of the equinoxes go backward, and fall earlier by one day in about 130 years. In the time

or new

of the Nicene council (A. D. 325), which was 1439 years ago, the vernal equinox fell on the 21st of March: and if we divide 1444 by 130, it will quote 11, which is the number of days the equinox has fallen back since the council of Nice. This causing great disturbances, by unfixing the times of the celebration of Easter, and consequently of all the other moveable feasts, pope Gregory the XIII, in the year 1582, ordered ten days to be at once stricken out of that year; and the next day after the fourth of Octo. ber was called the fifteenth. By this means, the vernal equinox was restored to the 21st of March; and it was endeavoured, by the omission of three intercalary days in 400 years, to make the civil or politi. cal year keep pace with the solar for the time to come. This new form of the year is called the Gregorian account, or new style ; which is received in all countries where the pope's authority is acknowledged, and ought to be in all places where truth is regarded.

378. The principal division of the year is into Months. months, which are of two sorts, namely, astronomi. cal and civil. The astronomical month is the time in which the Moon runs through the zodiac, and is either periodical or synodical. The periodical month is the time spent by the Moon in making one complete revolution from any point of the zodiac to the same again ; which is 27d 7h 43". The synodical month, called a lunation, is the time contained between the Moon's parting with the Sun at a conjunction, and returning to him again; which is 294 12 44". The civil months are those which are framed for the uses of civil life; and are different as to their names, number of days, and times of beginning, in several different countries. The first month of the Jewish Year fell, according to the Moon, in cur August and September, old style; the second in Sep. tember and October; and so on. The first month of the Egyptian year began on the 29th of our August. The first month of the Arabic and Turkish

year began the 16th of July. The first month of the Grecian year fell, according to the Moon, in June and July, the second in July and August, and so on, as in the following table.

379. A month is divided into four parts called weeks, and a week into seven parts called days; so that in a Julian year there are 13 such months, or 52 weeks, and one day over. The Gentiles gave the names of the Sun, Moon, and planets, to the days of the week. To the first, the name of the Sun; to the second, of the Moon; to the third, of Mars ; to the fourth, of Mercury; to the fifth, of Jupiter ; 10 the sixth, of Venus; and to the seventh, of Saturn.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Days in the year

354 In the embolimic year after Adar they added a

month called Ve-Adar, of 30 days.

NOI

The Egyptian year.

Days

1 Thoth

August 2 Paophi

September 3. Athir

October 4 Chojac

November 5 Tybi

December 6. Mechir

January 7 Phamenoth

February 8 Parmuthi

March 9 Pachon

April 10 Payni

May 11 Epiphi

June 12 Mesori

July
Epagomenæ or days added
Days in the year.

• 29 30

281 30 28! 30 27) 30 271 30 261 30 25! 30 271 30 261 30 261 30 25/ 30 25 30

5

1365

The Arabic and Turkish year.

Days

[ocr errors]

1 Muharram July 2 Saphar

August 3 Rabia I.

September 4 Rabia II.

October 5 Jomada I.

November 6 Jomada II. December 7 Rajab

January 8 Shasban

February 9 Ramadam

March 10 Shawal

April 11 Dulhaadah May 12 Dulheggia June

Days in the year

161 30 15/ 29 13 30 131 29 11 30 11 29 91 30 8) 29 9 30 8 29 71 30 51 29

354

The Arabians add 11 days at the end of every year, which keep the same months to the same scasons.

« AnteriorContinuar »