Poster boy replies, Thank you, Rebecca.
> Poster Boy, I feel a little guilty about you. I
> had started a reply to a rather interesting
> earlier post of yours, then got side-tracked, and
> never got back to it. So I'll respond here to both
Roughriders were playing, I get it!
> You asked something like whether, since it is
> archaeologists who say astronomy was very
> important to ancient peoples, it was reasonable
> for Martin to bring forward his astronomical
> thesis. Actually, archaeologists and historians
> tend to think that ancient peoples were interested
> in a whole lot of things, including the stars, and
> there may be many reasons why they produced images
> of animals. Animals surrounded them, as predators,
> as prey, as the subjects of narratives and myths,
> variously as spirit animals or the embodiment of
> ancestors, as totems, as natural hazards, even as
> companions. When archaeologists approach an
> iconographic corpus, constellations are well down
> the list of things we think of, unless there's
> reason to do so. So no, it does not seem
> reasonable that Martin interprets all of ancient
> art as constellation- or comet-related.
I dont presume he interprets "all" under such terms. My focus was on 43 and its relationship to his test.
> BTW, I agree with your reservations about that
> 1000-year gap.
Nice. So, you may agree that while problematic to Martin's thesis, the prevailing uncertainty of the dating is such that Martin has wiggle room, at least for now.
> Poster Boy Wrote:
> > Rebecca wrote,
> > "Do you need to "derive a numerical confidence
> > estimate" to tell you whether the car you're
> > driving is a Volkswagen or a Porsche? Or do you
> > judge according to the vehicle's attributes?"
> > To your first question, the answer depends
> > entirely on the scenario, and it is silly to
> > contemporaneous, very well-known items with
> > ancient depictions of whatever.
> Sorry, but you're missing my point here. Martin
> claimed that we could not identify the images
> reliably without some kind of quantification.
Really? I would think his test is meant to serve a different purpose, to demonstrate a strong objective correlation within the parameters of the test itself.
> most of the images are quite unambiguous; it's not
> rocket science. We distinguish between similar
> objects (like cars, in my analogy) all the time
> without having to resort to a pocket calculator.
Yes, but we must tread carefully. Oh, if I had a dime for every time I thought I knew what the Ancients were thinking:)
> > The notion that the GT art may reflect the
> > constellations IS a well founded possibility
> > you must know to be true but somehow can't
> > to, although won't now seems likely the better
> > word.
> Actually, I think it's highly, highly unlikely.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR CANDOR! I find that things move along much more fluidly when we discuss presuppositions.
There is some evidence that ancient
> peoples attributed meaning to and created
> narratives around individual bright stars, certain
> asterisms (which are not constellations), and the
> moon and visible planets (which Martin, curiously,
> doesn't incorporate into his two papers) - but
> Martin's use of the Western lore and anachronistic
> stick-figure visualizations is both ahistorical
> and fallacious.
Respectfully Rebecca, I know this is your thing, but don't you think it's unwise to rule out astronomical interest? I understand Martin's test is limited, but it seems too draconian, given what we know about the ancients later interest in the stars. Napta Playa stretches that interest back to 7500bc, in ways that suggest, to me -for involving precession-the possibility that the interest originated much earlier.
Another thing about NP, is that it demonstrates that portable precession tracking is possible. One doesn't require a pyramid or a long ball court etc... NP isn't just the oldest observatory we know of. It may just be the oldest one we've found. Others may appear at later times. The more that happens, the greater the demonstrable interest on the ancients' part. Like I said, you're the doctor (literally) on the greater picture. So I'll take your word for it that there is little direct and clear evidence of such interest of the ancients part. Really. But there is some, and I would say, based on my limited understanding that NP is the best and very good prehistoric evidnce of interest in precession.
A second thought is this. I just don't get your objection to Martin's use of stick people constellations. This may be new, or a very recent convention, as you say, but I don't see how you can rule this line of interpretation out on based on what we do know, such as "Orion" being anthropologically depicted as a person by the Egyptians.
> In that context, your Mickey Mouse attempt
> > at analogy - which you surely think is clever -
> > actually the opposite because it has no
> > archaeological foundation, unlike Martin's.
> You seem very bothered by my Bugs Bunny (not
> Mickey Mouse) paper, so I'll give you a bit of
> context. Martin showed up rather aggressively in
> the comments section of my blog, before I ever
> actually wrote about his hypothesis. In the course
> of a lively exchange of views over the next few
> weeks, he challenged me to comment on the
> statistical methodology of his first paper. My
> response (as I suspected his technique would
> inevitably produce strong confirmation) was to
> apply that methodology to a different database -
> and hey presto, replicating Martin's matching and
> statistical techniques, I was able to show that
> Looney Tunes characters were actually
> constellations! So it was a lighthearted exercise
> with a perfectly serious intent. I hope that
> clears it up a bit for you?
Yes it does, and thanks for the context. It's just that I've grown tired of mockery for mockery s sake on these boards, and as soon as I saw the image I knew that some people here would begin to heap praise on you because it was mocking, and that they would likely have little of anything of particular substance to add. Very unfair to Martin, imo.
Personally, I just thought it was not a good look on your part, as one academic addressing another on a public forum. But if there was some history, and Martin "asked" for it...
> > You seem to be trying the pseudo skeptic's lazy
> > maneuver of trying to say "anything goes."
> Martin's test is designed to make his analysis
> > fool proof in this regard, so that the clearly
> > and/or disingenuous interpretations are
> > and excluded from serious discussion.
> Not sure I understand you here. But I certainly
> would NOT say "anything goes."
> > Your second question follows the first,
> > Seriously? Or are we throwing whatever might
> > stick to the wall here as well?
> Are you talking about the no-head/big-square-butt
> ibex here? Now, you're clearly a guy who finds
> Martin's research impressive;
My position is that Martin may be on to something, and that this is a legit angle to explore at this very early stage, given the ancients' interest in precession and the equinox/solstices. As I mentioned to Martin, I think the success of his idea will hinge largely on redundancy, if the constellation animals appear on other stela, in reasonable juxtaposition. I think his ideas warrant further eploration, but in the end your idea may prove most compelling, that the carvings are just art for Art's sake. I am not married to either outcome.
I would be very
> interested in your response to the pictures I
> posted above, placing the disputed images side by
> side with comparative material. Cheers and thanks!
I will pass, on the grounds that I knew what your point was long before I saw the Disney image: The night skies are truly ambiguous.
That said, the zodiac we settled on, although arbitrarily arranged, DOES point to "rams", "bulls" and whatnot because 'we' have adopted these meanings, which is to say that they now have a life of their own and an objective reality, unlike Bugs Bunny,et al.
If we lived in a world where there was only one artifact representation the zodiac -with all others being lost-it would be just as easy to dismiss the ram, bull etc interpretation with your Disney presentation. But that wouldn't make the deeper point. All you will have done is articulate what we all know, which is that all celestial depictions are arbitrary.
But that doesn't refute the possibility that some depictions gained consensus objectivity I antiquity, by groups who may have adopted pet associations for practical reasons, "I'll be back when the ibex/feline appears."
That's the idea that I see Martin exploring, and while that may seem highly unlikely to you, at present I think it's far too early to rule out, and one to keep an eye on. PB.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 18-Aug-19 16:44 by Poster Boy.