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Astronomical Dating and Statistical Analysis of Ancient Chinese Eclipse Data

  • Kevin D. Pang (a1), Kevin K. Yau (a2) and Hung-Hsiang Chou (a3)
Extract

All 13 Shang dynasty oracle bone eclipse records have been uniquely matched to 6 solar and 7 lunar eclipses in the 14-12th centuries B.C. The King Zhong Kang 5th year autumnal (Oct. 16, 1876 B.C.) and King Yu 3rd year “double sunset” (Sept. 24, 1912 B.C.) eclipses confirm the accuracy of the revised Bamboo Annals Xia dynasty chronology (Nivision and Pang, Early China 15, 1990, 87). The eclipse dates are plotted against the number of generations before 841 B.C. (earliest accurate date), the respective kings ruled. The curve of benefit has both the strengths of verified royal genealogy – continuity – and eclipse dating – accuracy. It is 99% accurate, and can be confidently used as a foundation for building a detailed absolute chronology for the Xia, Shang and Zhou dynasties, an important project in China’s new 5-Year Plan (Song, Sci. Tech. Daily, May 17, 1996; Newsweek, July 7, 1997).

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References
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Chen, Zungui (1988) History of Chinese Astronomy, rev. ed., Ming Wen Press, vol. 3, pp. 177178, vol. 4, p. 42
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Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union
  • ISSN: -
  • EISSN: 1539-2996
  • URL: /core/journals/proceedings-of-the-international-astronomical-union
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