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that at daybreak on the morning which follows the 1st of April: —

Pleiades incipitmt humeros relevare paternos Quae septem dici, sex tamen esse solent.

According to the legend, the Pleiades were the daughters of Atlas, who supported the heavens on his shoulders, and hence, when they disappeared from the sky, they might be said to remove a portion of their father's burden " humeros relevare paternos." The apparent morning setting is there­fore clearly denoted. But this took place at Rome on the 9th of November, while, on the other hand, the apparent evening (or heliacal) setting fell upon the 8th of April, only six days after the date men­tioned. Hence, the poet blundered between the morning setting and the evening setting, which are many months apart.

Again (v. 599), the Pleiades are said to rise visibly in the morning on May 14-th, marking the end of spring and the beginning of summer. Now the heliacal rising of the Pleiades did not take place at Rome when Ovid wrote until May 28th ; but the phenomenon in question took place at Athens on May 16th in the age of Meton. Hence this observation was evidently copied from a Greek calendar computed for the fifth century b. c.


Considerable difficulty arises in the discussion of the passages which refer to Arcturus, from the cir­cumstance that this name is sometimes applied generally to the whole of the wide-spreading con­stellation of Bootes, and sometimes confined to the bright star in the knee of the figure.

homer. — Homer (Od. v. 29) speaks of Arc-turns as ov|/e 5uoi/ra, because the apparent evening or heliacal setting took place late in the year when winter was nigh, at hand, and hence the phrase vuktzs eV 'ApKrovpfp for long nig/its. (See Arat. 585.) Another explanation of the phrase has been given above when discussing the constellation Bootes.

hesiod. — Hesiod (Erg. 564) dates the com­mencement of Spring from the evening rising of Arcturus (eTnTeAAercu dxpOKvefyaios) sixty days after the solstice. Now the apparent evening rising for the age and country of Hesiod fell upon the 24th of February, therefore his statement is correct in round numbers.

Again, in the same poem (659) he marks the period of the vintage by the morning (heliacal) rising of Arcturus, which, according to Ideler, fell in that age on the 18th of September.

columella, pliny.—Morning Rising. Colu-mella (ix. 14. § 10) places the rising of Arcturus about fifty days after the rising of Canicula; and since the heliacal rising of the latter fell on the 2cl of August at Rome in the Julian era, and of the former on the 21st of September, the computation is exact.

Pliny (xviii. 74), Arcturus vero medius pridie Idus (sc. Septembr. oritur), i. e. 12th of September, where the middle portion of the whole constellation is indicated, and the observation is very accurate.

Morning Setting. — (1.) XL et X. Kal. Jun. (22d and 23d May) Arcturus mane occidit. Col. xi. 2. § 43.

(2.) VII. Id. Jun. (9th June) Arcturus occidit. Id. § 45.



(3.) Pliny (xviii. 67. § 3) ascribes the Arcfuri occasus matutinus to V. Id. Mai, i. e. llth May.

(4.) Again, in the same section we find that Arcturus matutino occidit on the 8th of June.

Now the true morning setting of Arcturus for Rome at this epoch belongs to 28th of May, the apparent morning setting to 10th of June.

But (1) seems to be copied from the observation of Euctemon in the Parapegma of Geminus ; (2) is a close approximation to the apparent morning setting for Rome ; (3) is altogether erroneous, and must be a true morning setting extracted from some old Greek calendar; (4) corresponds with (2), and is nearly correct.

Evening Rising. — (1.) IX. Kal. Mart. (21st Feb.) Arcturus prima node oritur. Col. xi. 2. § 21.

(2.) Ortus Arcturi qui est ab Idibus Februariis (13th Feb.). Col. ix. 14.

(3.) VIII. Kal. Mart. (22d Feb.) liirundinis visu et postero die (23d Feb.) Arcturi exortu ves-pertino. Plin. //. N. xviii. 65.

Now the apparent evening rising of Arcturus took place for Rome at the Julian epoch on the 27th of February, the true evening rising on the 6th of March. But since it is evident from (2) that Columella here employed Arcturus to denote not merely the star properly so called, but the whole figure of Bootes, a latitude of several days must be allowed in the case of this as of all the larger constellations. See below the remarks on Ov. Fast. ii. 153. We may remark, however, that 21st—23d of February will answer for the appa­rent evening rising of the star Arcturus at Athens in the age of Meton.

Evening Setting. IV. Kal Nov. (29th Oct.) Arcturus vespere occidit^ ventosus dies. Col. xi. 2.


This is taken verbatim from an observation of

Euctemon quoted in the Parapegma of Geminus. The heliacal setting for Rome was a few days later, about the 4th of November. But the ob­servation of Euctemon is not accurate for the lati­tude of Athens in his own age, for the phenomenon ought to have been placed about five days earlier, which proves, as Pfaff remarks, that the Greek astronomers are not always to be depended upon in these matters.

We find in Pliny (xviii. 68. § 2), VIII. Id. Aug. (6th August) Arcturus medius occidit. This is so far removed from any setting of the star in question that Harduin pronounces the text corrupt, and substitutes VII. Id. Aug. Aquarius occidit me-diuS) while Pfaff endeavours to refer the expression to the culmination, an explanation which is both in itself forced and completely at variance with the ordinary usage of Pliny.

Again, Pliny (xviii. § 74), Pridie Kalendas (Nov.) Caesari Arcturus occidit^ i. e. 31st of Oc­tober, and a few lines farther on IV. Nonas Arc­turus occidit vesperi. The latter is not far from the truth ; the former, unless it refers to the con­stellation in general, must have been borrowed from a foreign source.

virgil.—Virgil (Georg. i. 229) instructs the husbandman to sow vetches, kidney beans and len-tiles, when Bootes sets, by which he probably intends to indicate the heliacal setting of Arcturus on the 4th of November. In like manner Pliny (xviii. 15. § 24) orders the vetch to "be sown about the setting of Arcturus, the kidney bean at the setting of Bootes (xviii. 24), the lentile in the

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