Rhythm of the moon written on the land at Newark Earthworks

Faculty

Emeritus Professor of Physics Mike Mickelson draws a line in the sky, tracing the pathways of the moon to ancient Native American works.

He reports in the Newark Advocate:

Each month as we watch the rising and setting of the moon, we can see that it marches daily from most northerly rise and set points on the horizon to most southerly ones, and then returns again to the north to repeat the cycle in 29.5 days. The longer one cycle repeats every 18.61 years.

The people who designed and constructed the Newark Octagon Earthworks encoded the major lunar standstill as well as a so-called minor standstill on the landscape in the forms of these elaborate earthworks.

The genius of these folks brought together ancient knowledge of the sky, a design reflecting the cosmos, and the organization of a monumental effort for reasons we don’t completely understand.

This remarkable effort will be recognized again in the observations of this 18.61-year cyclical event in March of 2025 and the months surrounding. It is a standstill, so it will recur for many months before and after the technical astronomical date.

The moon’s travels through space and time are encoded in the Newark Octagon.

Posted Date 
Wednesday, February 17, 2021

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