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Gnomons in Ancient China

Reference work entry

Abstract

Gnomon shadow measurement was one of the most fundamental astronomical observations in ancient China. It was crucial for calendar making, which constituted an important aspect of imperial governance. A painted stick discovered from a prehistoric (2300 BC) astronomical site of Taosi (see  Chap. 201, “Taosi Observatory”) is the oldest gnomon known of China. From second century BC onward, gnomon shadow measurements have been essential part of calendrical practice. Various historical measurements are discussed in this chapter.

Keywords

Summer Solstice Winter Solstice Solar Term Royal Tomb Imperial Authority 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center of Ancient Chinese AstronomyNational Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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