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Apogee – “In astronomy, that point in the orbit of any heavenly body at its greatest distance from the earth: especially applied to the moon: opposed to perigee” (Webster’s New Universal Unabridged Dictionary). When the moon is in apogee, it appears slimmer/narrower.
Barley-harvest Law – The Hebrew calendation principle which enabled the shorter lunar year to be reconciled to the longer solar year. It provided that a full moon for the first month of the new year would fall between April 8 and May 6. The barley was the first grain to ripen in the spring and God required the Jews to offer the first fruits of the barley harvest in a wave sheaf offering on second day of Feast of Unleavend Bread, or Nisan 16.
Calendation – Study of calendar construction, principles or history.
Common Years – A luni-solar year in the Hebrew calendar which consisted of 12 lunations, as opposed to the 13 lunations of the embolismic years.
Conjunction – “Heavenly bodies are said to be in conjunction when they are seen in the same part of the heavens, or have the same longitude. The inferior conjunction of a planet is its position when in conjunction on the same side of the sun with the earth; the superior conjunction is its position when on the side of the sun most distant from the earth” (ibid.). When the earth and moon are in conjunction, the moon cannot be seen. This is also called the Black Moon.
Embolismic – “The insertion of a day or other period of time into a calendar, as in leap year” (ibid.). The embolismic year on the Jewish luni-solar calendar was 13 months/lunations long. The purpose was to reconcile the shorter lunar year to the longer solar year with the addition of an extra month.
Gregorian Calendar – “ A corrected form of the Julian calendar, introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582 and now used in most countries of the world: it provides for an ordinary year of 365 days and a leap year of 366 days every fourth even year, exclusive of century years, which are leap years only if exactly divisible by 400” (ibid.). The Julian calendar flowed smoothly into the Gregorian without any disruption of the continuous weekly cycle. It removed 10 days from the year in order to bring Easter back into alignment with the vernal equinox.
Horology – The study of hours. “The science or art of measuring time” (ibid.). The Hebrew day consisted of 12 hours. These were shorter in the winter and longer in the summer.
Julian Calendar – Calendar established by Julius Cæsar in 46 B.C. “Every fourth year [was given] 366 days, the other years having 365 days each: the months were the same as in the Gregorian or New Style calendar now used” (ibid.).
Lunation – “The revolution of the moon, from Latin luna, moon. The period of a synodic revolution of the moon, or the time from one new moon to the following, equal to about 29 ½ days; lunar month” (ibid.).
Meridian – The highest point in the arc of any celestial body.
Mosaic Calendar – The calendar established by God at Creation, reaffirmed by Him at Mt. Sinai, kept by Christ during His life on earth and used by apostolic Christians until the Council of Nicæa.
New Moon – A religious festival; a time for consecrating the coming month unto the Lord.
Perigee – “That point in the orbit of a heavenly body, especially of the moon, in which it is at the least distance from the earth: opposed to apogee” (ibid.). The moon in perigee appears widest at this point because it is nearest the earth.
Phase, Phases, Phasis – “In astronomy, any of the stages of variation in the illumination or appearance of the moon or a planet” (ibid.).
Translation – The period of time between conjunction and the first appearance of the new moon. On a 30 day month, the 30th day which lies between the seventh-day Sabbath on the 29th, and the next new moon on the 1st of the following month.Vernal Equinox – Otherwise known as the spring equinox. Officially falling on March 21, “the precise time when the sun crosses the equator, making the day and night everywhere of equal length” (ibid.). An occasion of special celebration among all ancient pagan religions.