Descriptive Archaeoastronomy and Ancient Indian Chronology

This book presents the basic fundamentals of descriptive archaeoastronomy and its application to the astronomical descriptions found in ancient Indian scriptures. Archaeoastronomy is a branch of positional astronomy that helps to determine the epochs of ancient astronomical alignments and special astronomical events. Les mer
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Om boka

This book presents the basic fundamentals of descriptive archaeoastronomy and its application to the astronomical descriptions found in ancient Indian scriptures. Archaeoastronomy is a branch of positional astronomy that helps to determine the epochs of ancient astronomical alignments and special astronomical events. In this book, only the descriptions of special stellar alignments and events found in ancient texts can identify the antiquity of the descriptions. India possesses a large volume of ancient scriptures like Vedas and Puranas which contain many astronomical descriptions as in ancient India positional astronomy was well developed. The antiquities of these texts are determined through archaeoastronomical techniques. Major events like Mahabharata War are dated and using these dates a chronology of ancient India is determined. The astronomically determined chronology is compared with the results from various archaeological, palaeoclimatological, geological and genealogical investigations of ancient India. This introductory book interests readers interested in unveiling the mystery involved with the protohistory of this ancient civilization.

Fakta

Innholdsfortegnelse

Table of Contents



Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION



1.1: Preamble



1.2: Importance of Chronology in History



1.3: Problems with Establishing Ancient Indian Chronology



1.4: Application of Astronomical Technique



1.5: Influence of Astronomy in Society



1.6: Structure of Ancient Indian Chronology and its Self consistency



Chapter 2: RUDIMENTS OF POSITIONAL ASTRONOMY AND ARCHAEOASTRONOMY



2.1: Introduction to Positional Astronomy



2.1.1: A few basic points



2.1.2: Celestial coordinates



2.2: Variations of Astronomical Parameters



2.2.1: Periodic variations



2.2.2: Secular changes



2.3: Eclipse



2.4: Physical and Descriptive Archaeoastronomy



2.4.1: Physical archaeoastronomy



2.4.2: Basics of descriptive archaeoastronomy



Chapter 3: ASTRONOMY IN ANCIENT INDIA



3.1: Importance of Understanding the Ancient Indian Astronomical System



3.2: Rediscovery of Ancient Indian Astronomy



3.3: Astronomy in Ancient India



3.3.1: Presiddhantic astronomy



3.3.2: Siddhantic astronomy







Chapter 4: DESCRIPTIVE ARCHAEOASTRONOMICAL APPROACHES



4.1: Introduction



4.2: Effects of the Precession of Equinox on Observational Astronomy



4.2.1: Changing relation of seasons with lunar months



4.2.2: Simultaneous transit of important stars



4.2.3: Heliacal rising of stars and constellations



4.3: Exaltation of Planets



4.4: Ancient Eclipses



4.5: Advance of Perihelion of Earth's Orbit



4.6: Saptarshi Cycle



Chapter 5: ARCHAEOASTRONOMICAL STUDY OF ANCIENT INDIAN CHRONOLOGY: DATING MAHABHARATA



5.1: Introductory Comments



5.2: Ancient India's Geographic Boundaries as Implied in Ancient Texts



5.3: Structural Frame Work for Ancient Indian Chronology



5.4: Genealogy of Puranic Dynasties



5.5: Date of Mahabharata



5.5.1: Types of astronomical references



5.5.2: Dating Mahabharata war



Chapter 6: CHRONOLOGY OF VEDIC AND VEDANGA PERIODS



6.1: Introduction



6.2: Hints of High Antiquity of Vedas



6.3: Astronomical References in Vedic and Other Ancient Texts



6.3.1: Heliacal rising of Ashvins at winter solstice



6.3.2: Madhu vidyaand heliacal rising of Ashvins



6.3.3: Orion's head near vernal equinox



6.3.4: Heliacal rising of Magha ( Leonis) on summer solstice day



6.3.5: Dogs of Yama and the direction to pitriloka



6.3.6: Prajapati - Rohini legend



6.3.7: Solar eclipse recorded in Rigveda



6.4: Astronomical References in Brahmanas



6.4.1: Krittika never swerves from the east



6.4.2: Solar eclipses and heliacal risings described in Brahmanas



6.5: Vedanga Jyotisha



6.6: Dating through Astrological References



6.7: The Emerging Picture



Chapter 7: ARCHAEOLOGICAL, GEOLOGICAL AND GENEALOGICAL INDICATIONS OF ANCIENT CHRONOLOGY



7.1: Consistency of Astronomical Dating



7.2: Lost River Sarasvati



7.3: Changing Sea Level



7.4: Genealogical Sources for Investigating Ancient Indian Chronology



7.5: Archaeological Discoveries and Ancient Indian Chronology



CONCLUDING REMARKS



BIBLIOGRAPHY



Appendix A: SPHERICAL ASTRONOMY



A.1: Celestial Sphere and Spherical Trigonometry



A.2: Transformation of Coordinates



A.3: Rising and Setting of Celestial Objects



A.4: Effect of Precession of the Equinox



A.5: Heliacal Rising of a Star



Appendix B: NIRAYANA LONGITUDES OF NAKSHATRAS AND ZODIACAL SIGNS



Appendix C: GENEALOGICAL LISTS OF ANCIENT INDIAN KINGS



C.1: Predeluvial Dynasties



C.2: Postdeluvial Solar Dynasty of Ikshaku



C.3: Lunar Dynasty: Main Line of Purus



C.4: Line of Yadu Dynasty



C.5: Post Mahabharata Dynasties



INDEX

Om forfatteren

Amitabha Ghosh received his Bachelor's, Master's and Doctoral degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Calcutta University in 1962, 1964 and 1969, respectively. After serving as a Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering at his alma mater, Bengal Engineering College, Shibpur (now an Institute of National Importance-Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology, Shibpur) from 1965 to 1970, Prof. Ghosh joined Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur as an Assistant Professor in January 1971. He served at the Institute as a Professor of Mechanical Engineering from 1975 until his retirement in 2006.

From 1977 to 1978, Professor Ghosh visited the RWTH Aachen as a Senior Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, and subsequently visited the RWTH Aachen in the same capacity several times between then and 2012. He served as Director of the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur from 1997 to 2002. His primary areas of research are manufacturing science, robotics, kinematics and mechanism theory and dynamics of mechanical systems. Prof. Ghosh has received many academic awards including a number of Calcutta University Gold Medals, the D.Sc. (h.c.), Distinguished Teacher award from IIT Kanpur and the Award for Excellence in Research by the National Academy of Engineering.