By Keith Hunter
360 days per year: The Ancient Standard
As a result of modern day astronomical observations it is well established that the current earth year is about 365.2421897 days in length. This fact of the modern age noted however, from the study of many civilisations from the distant past, it has come to light that there was once a widely held belief that in some very remote age, the earth possessed a yearly orbit of precisely 360 days.
Indeed, many such past cultures widely separated from one another actively established calendar systems based upon a 360-day year, including the ancient Egyptians, the Maya, and the Babylonians to name but a few.
And yet, they did this even though their astronomers were well
able to determine that the earth did not in fact possess 360 days per
year. Their own measurements were accurate enough to inform them of the
fact that it was indeed about 365 ¼ days. Even so, they still used 360
alongside the observed period. Both years were thus recognised and
acknowledged, almost suggesting a wilful desire to retain the memory of
what was once an ‘ideal’ earth orbital period. For to their minds truly,
the earth had indeed at some point in the past made an actual physical
transition from one measure to the other. One of the most well known
examples of the story of the transformation of the earth orbit, encoded
in mythical form and surviving even down to this present day, comes from
Egypt; a tale involving various ‘gods’, whose actions are held directly
responsible for the increase in the length of the year:
A long time ago, Re, who was god of the sun, ruled the earth. During this time, he heard of a prophecy that Nut, the sky goddess, would give birth to a son who would depose him. Therefore Re cast a spell to the effect that Nut could not give birth on any day of the year, which was then itself composed of precisely 360 days. To help Nut to counter this spell, the wisdom god Thoth devised a plan.
Thoth went to the Moon god Khonsu and asked that he play a game known as Senet, requesting that they play for the very light of the moon itself. Feeling confident and that he would win, Khonsu agreed. However, in the course of playing he lost the game several times in succession, such that Thoth ended up winning from the moon a substantial measure of its light, equal to about five days.
With this in hand, Thoth then took this extra time, and gave
it to Nut. In doing so this had the effect of increasing the earth’s
number of days per year, allowing Nut to give birth to a succession of
children; one upon each of the extra 5 days that were added to the
original 360. And as for the moon, losing its light had quite an effect
upon it, for it became weaker and smaller in the sky. Being forced to
hide itself periodically to recuperate; it could only show itself fully
for a short period of time before having to disappear to regain its
As can be seen from the above noted myth, (paraphrased from various sources) the ancient Egyptians were thoroughly of the mind that an increase to the earth year by some 5 extra days was an event that had indeed truly happened at some point in the past. Moreover, this was not something that was held to be good either, for in fact, the extra days were viewed as ‘unlucky’. A 360-day year was thought harmonious, whilst the current year was in some strange sense held to be ‘deficient’.
Of course, in the modern age, the very idea that the earth did once truly possess 360 days to one orbit about the sun is regarded as preposterous and a nonsense by most scientists. It is dismissed out of hand as being something that cannot be proven. That is, until now. Indeed, it so transpires that a new proof has recently come to light that decisively demonstrates that the earth did indeed once possess a 360-day year. The ancients would seem to have been right, and modern astronomers wrong.
The essential nature of the actual proof that the earth once possessed 360 days per year rests upon an apparent connection between the basic units of angular measure, which include degrees, minutes, and seconds of arc, and the outward dimensions of the physical form of the earth, including also the orbit of the moon. There are thus two aspects to the proof as a whole, each of which combined, are found to strongly support the idea that the earth did indeed once possess a 360 day orbit. And indeed, as was mentioned in the previous essays concerning the link, underlying support for the proof itself, rests upon the work of Johannes Kepler; upon his own unique discovery of the validity of laws of proportion operative within the universe.
The following links reveal then the decisive proof of a once existent 360-day year, and should be read each in turn: