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Statement of belief: “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” (John 17:17 KJV)


Updated 5925[(*??*)] 08 27 2029 [2012-12-12]

Updated 5926[(*??*)] 04 07 2030 [2014-07-07]

Edit 5927[(*??*)] 13 16 2031 [2015-04-04] – Adding a link to view the lunar eclipse of King Saul at En-Dor before the last pole-shift.


Cross Correlating the

Recorded History

of the New Testament Era vs.

Exactly Dated Astronomical Events


A listing of more than 56± celestial and 5 other events (the earliest one dated to July 3, 1420 BCE; one dated most likely to March 23, 1028 BCE that is being matched to the death of Saul, King of Israel; one dated in 588 BCE, one of two key anchor points for the Olympic Calendar; eleven in the Greek era; and the remainder mostly from 222 BCE thru 212 CE.) All matched to historical records tied to the reigns of various Roman Emperors and other dated historical events.






Below is a table listing two (2) pole shifts, twelve (12) comets, seventeen (17) solar eclipses, nineteen (19) lunar eclipses, one (1) comet eclipse, five (5) meteor showers, one (1) unexplained 16 hour long darkness over the New England area, two (2) earth quakes, one (1) or possibly two volcanic eruptions, and one (1) dated lunar zodiac constellation, each of which has been matched to key historical events from 1420 BCE, through 1886 CE. And, in addition to that there are the many and numerous celestial events recorded on the Babylonian clay tablet VAT4956… Based upon these matches, plus a large number of matches based upon the New Moons of the biblical calendar as referenced in the New Testament and by Josephus, I cannot avoid concluding that…


It is time for a paradigm shift re the dating of historical events, not only surrounding the beginning of the Christian era, but re most of ancient history prior to 300± CE!


In order to arrive at a more correct and reliable chronology of history many dates presently considered well known and well established by conventional historians - though without matches to celestial events described in historical records - must be shifted back in time between five and fifteen years relative to the dates usually provided within conventional historical works. This applies to all the events in the New Testament as well as to the regnal periods of the Roman Emperors.


Josephus, Suetonius and Tacitus constitute three apparently independent witnesses agreeing with one another perfectly in most instances, while also being more or less concurrent in time with the events here described.


Josephus is describing a number of exactly dated events which presently seem to have been nailed down fairly solidly upon the cross of exact astronomical tables of solar and lunar eclipses and phases of the moon. Josephus is referencing one important lunar eclipse (9 BCE) and one comet (54 CE) within the period of time here considered.


One historical fingerprint with many particulars is the period of time surrounding Herod the Great’s reign.


I gratefully acknowledge the tremendous work done by Ronald L. Conte Jr. in identifying perhaps half of the within correlations between historical and celestial events, or most of the 18 or so correlations that I was aware of when I began this article. One part of the within work consists merely in consolidating the astronomical events already identified by Ronald L. Conte Jr., and in further establishing and revising the exact dates based [primarily] upon Josephus’ works and upon the available quotes from  Suetonius and Tacitus.  Another most important part of the within work is based [primarily] upon the most reliable Greek manuscripts of the New Testament, the Textus Receptus, and the references to time as there specified. Further verification has been found in Shem Tov’s Hebrew Matthew, which is a late transcript of an original Hebrew text of the Gospel of Matthew from which the Greek manuscripts of Matthew are obviously translated (cf. this link!)


For additional detail of the below table please click here!.


For a listing of dated New Testament events and the supporting calculations and references click here.


For a listing of the starting and ending dates of the twelve Roman Emperors from Julius Caesar through Domitian, and the supporting calculations and references, click here.


For an outline of the events of the War and the Destruction of Jerusalem by Titus, and the supporting calculations and references, click here.


In contrast to data presented in the table below, please notice the glaring absence of any significant correlations between exactly dated celestial events and conventional Roman and New Testament chronologies.




NOTICE: To see the movies you may need to download the free Quicktime 6.0 or later software.  Or else go get your copy of the Starry Night Backyard software, per chance you’ll find a free trial offer (Mac; and please, if you have trouble getting your free trial version to work, send me an email! Perhaps I can help…,) and make your own studies of the starry skies as I did mine.





References and Quotes:


A pole shift; the second of the three pole shifts identified by Charles Hapgood.

July 3, 1420 BCE, Joshua’s Long Day.

Joshua 10:12

“Then spake Joshua to the LORD in the day when the LORD delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon.”




Cf. #2b below!

IF there has been no significant pole shift since the time of King Saul:

A total lunar eclipse

- Tied (?) in the Holy Scriptures to the sunrise of a Seventh-day Sabbath further defined by a certain numbered month of the Scriptural calendar year, which month is identified by the record found in 1 Samuel 27:7. More…

January 10, 1043 BCE

Quoting the Holy Scriptures:


Tied to the death of King Saul of Israel are the familiar words out of 1 Samuel 28:13, 14 (KJV)


I saw gods ascending out of the earth… An old man cometh up; and he is covered with a mantle…,” which words are probably better translated (TLT ©) “I saw gods [the sun and the moon] being above the horizon of the earth… A waxing old [mature and/or setting] entity [the ‘old moon’] above [the horizon of the earth]; and it was covered with a cover[ing shadow, i.e. a lunar eclipse.]




For a detailed study, please cf. this link to another article of mine.


If the solar event in the 15th year of  Hezekiah, King of Judah, was a pole-shift, then Mt. Tabor, at the time of King Saul, may have been located at about 13 S; 41 W, and…

A total lunar eclipse

- Tied (?) in the Holy Scriptures to the sunrise of a Seventh-day Sabbath further defined by a certain numbered month of the Scriptural calendar year, which month is identified by the record found in 1 Samuel 27:7. More…

March 23, 1028 BCE

Quoting the Holy Scriptures:


Tied to the death of King Saul of Israel are the familiar words out of 1 Samuel 28:13, 14 (KJV)


I saw gods ascending out of the earth… An old man cometh up; and he is covered with a mantle…,” which words are probably better translated (TLT ©) “I saw gods [the sun and the moon] being above the horizon of the earth… A waxing old [mature and/or setting] entity [the ‘old moon’] above [the horizon of the earth]; and it was covered with a cover[ing shadow, i.e. a lunar eclipse.]




For a detailed study, please cf. this link to another article of mine.






















A pole shift; the third of the three pole shifts identified by Charles Hapgood.

An event that took place within the year beginning with Tishri 22, 699 BCE, King Hezekiah’s 15th year of reign.

Isa 38:8

8  Behold, I will bring again the shadow of the degrees, which is gone down in the sun dial of Ahaz, ten degrees backward. So the sun returned ten degrees, by which degrees it was gone down.


2 Kings 20:8-11

8  And Hezekiah said unto Isaiah, What shall be the sign that the LORD will heal me, and that I shall go up into the house of the LORD the third day?

9 And Isaiah said, This sign shalt thou have of the LORD, that the LORD will do the thing that he hath spoken: shall the shadow go forward ten degrees, or go back ten degrees?

10 And Hezekiah answered, It is a light thing for the shadow to go down ten degrees: nay, but let the shadow return backward ten degrees.

11 And Isaiah the prophet cried unto the LORD: and he brought the shadow ten degrees backward, by which it had gone down in the dial of Ahaz.



Flynn, David, Temple at the Center of Time, p. 2:

”Plato, Timaeus… Further in this work is the story of Atlantis… that had disappeared ”in a single day and night of misfortune”. ”

(Plato, The Timaeus, translated by Benjamin Jowett (New York, Liberal Arts Press, 1949).)



Solar eclipse prediction

July 29, 588 BCE

Notice: This solar eclipse is one of two very important anchor points for the Olympic calendar and its use in ancient times. The second one is the November 24, 29 CE total solar eclipse. (A third one, August 15, 310 BCE, is being claimed by some as an anchor point for the ancient Olympiad calendar, but this one was not specifically dated by the original source in terms of Olympiad years and cannot be relied upon as a certain anchor point in time. Please cf. my article at this link for further details!)


Notice: This total solar eclipse is, more than likely, the one being referenced by Pliny as having occurred in the 4th year of the 48th Olympiad, which year began July 1, 588 BCE. This July 29, 588 BCE annular solar eclipse was visible from northern Greece: Cf. Fred Espenak’s map of solar eclipses from 600 BCE – 581 BCE, his map of this eclipse, and his interactive map of this eclipse! It follows also that, if Pliny as quoted is correct, then AUC 1 began in 758 BCE!



Quoting MrEclipse.com:

"The original discovery (of the cause of eclipses) was made in Greece by Thales of Miletus, who in the fourth year of the 48th Olympiad (585/4 BC) foretold the eclipse of the Sun that occurred in the reign of Alyattes, in the 170th year after the foundation of Rome (584/3 BC)"

“Probably refers to the total solar eclipse of 28 May 585 BC.
“From: Pliny, Naturalis Historia, II, 53.
“Quoted in Historical Eclipses and Earth's Rotation, by F Richard Stephenson, Cambridge University Press, 1997, page 342.

Click here and here for Fred Espenak's maps of the 585 BC eclipse.



Numerous celestial events observed and recorded upon the Babylonian clay tablet VAT 4956

April 22, 568 BCE – April 13 or 14, 567 BCE

The Babylonian clay tablet originally recorded in Nebuchadnezzar’s 37th  and 38th year of reign. For details and links to screen shots from my astronomy software re the particulars of the observations upon the clay tablet, please cf. my analysis and comments at this link.


A pre-dawn lunar eclipse covering 83% of the lunar diameter.

September 26, 554 BCE

Quoting Nabonides’ Chronicle (B.M. 35382; aka. Nabon. No. 24; aka. Stele H1, B:)


In the beginning of my everlasting reign they sent me a dream. Marduk, the great lord, and Sin, the luminary of heaven and the netherworld, stood together. Marduk spoke with me: 'Nabonidus, king of Babylon…

(Nabonides Chronicle [i.8-ii.25] From GTR4, p. 116.)


An evening total lunar eclipse beginning at 8:55 PM, local time in Babylon, and visible until 12:33 AM.

January 29, 551 BCE

Quoting Nabonides’ Chronicle (B.M. 35382; aka. Nabon. No. 24; aka. Stele H1, B:)


At the beginning of the third year [Nissan 551 BCE], they aroused him, Cyrus, the king of Anšan, his second in rank.[2] He scattered the vast Median hordes with his small army. He captured Astyages, the king of the Medes, and took him to his country as captive. Such was the word [that is, the message provided by means of this eclipse shortly before the beginning of Nabonides’ 3rd Babylonian year of reign  / TLT © comment] of the great lord Marduk [the Sun] and of Sin [the Moon,] the luminary of heaven and the netherworld, whose command is not revoked.

(Nabonides Chronicle [i.8-ii.25] From GTR4, p. 116.)


A total lunar eclipse

August 27, 413 BCE ?

Notice: This eclipse correlation is based solely upon the below reference and has no correlation, that I am so far aware of, with my chronology. Accordingly, so far as I am concerned, this may well be a flawed correlation! I am retaining the reference for potential future use… Cf. Nicias’ eclipse below!


Quoting a recent conventional authority:


But on that very night, the moon, being full, was totally eclipsed,b and not only Nicias himself, but all the Greeks with him, were paralyzed with fear by what they considered a terrific portent. After consulting a diviner, Nicias declared that the army could not embark until the moon had completed another revolution. He was approaching his destruction, and even nature seemed to conspire with ill fortune to ruin him. In total inactivity he passed his time in sacrificing to the gods, while his diviner consulted the auguries presented by the victims. His ships lay idly at anchor, their seams opening under the blazing sun; his disheartened soldiers made no attempt to prevent the Syracusans from hemming them in; hundreds died of the malarial sickness spread by the pestilential swamp.


b ) The eclipse dates the battle: August 27, 413 B.C.


(Crawford, Francis Marion, The Rulers of the South, Part 2 of 3, p. 143.)



Total solar eclipse

January 18, 402 BCE at 9:13± AM

1.       Interactive Google map

2.       Saros map

3.       Total and Annular Solar Eclipse Paths 320-301 BCE

4.       Index to colored Saros maps of all solar eclipses from 2000 BCE through 3000 CE


Quoting Thucydides re Pericles’ eclipse:


28. Also the same summer, on the first day of the month according to the moon (at which time it seems only possible), in the afternoon happened an eclipse of the sun. The which, after it had appeared in the form of a crescent and withal some stars had been discerned, came afterwards again to the former brightness.


History of the Peloponnesian War, Book II, Thucydides 2.47



Quoting Plutarch re Pericles’ eclipse:


But when the ships were already manned, and Pericles had gone aboard his own trireme, it chanced that the sun was eclipsed and darkness came on, and all were thoroughly frightened, looking upon it as a great portent. 2 Accordingly, seeing that his steersman was timorous and utterly perplexed, held up his cloak before the man's eyes, and, thus covering them, asked him if he thought it anything dreadful, or portentous of anything dreadful. "No," said the steersman. "How then," said Pericles, "is yonder event different from this, except that it is something rather larger than my cloak which has caused the obscurity?" At any rate, this tale is told in the schools of philosophy.


Plutarch, The Parallel Lives, Vol III., The Life of Pericles


Notice: For a detailed analysis of this placement in time of the above quoted events re Pericles’ eclipse in the latter part of the 1st year of the Peloponnesian War, that is, vs. the common placement some thirty years prior, please cf. my article at this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total lunar eclipse

August 18, 385 BCE from moonrise at sunset until 9:11 PM local Syracuse time.

Quoting Plutarch re Nicias’ eclipse:


 “23 But just as everything was prepared for this and none of the enemy were on the watch, since they did not expect the move at all, there came an eclipse of the moon by night.”


Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Nicias, Vol III:23


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Hybrid solar eclipse

Nov 5, 380 BCE observed at 8:00 AM local solar time from Boeotia, Greece as a partial solar eclipse of 0.9 magnitude.

Quoting Plutarch re Agesilaüseclipse:


 “17… 2 Agesilaüs now marched through the pass of Thermopylae, traversed Phocis, which was friendly to Sparta, entered Boeotia, and encamped near Chaeroneia. Here a partial eclipse of the sun occurred, and at the same time news came to him of the death of Peisander, who was defeated in a naval battle off Cnidus by Pharnabazus and Conon..”


Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Agesilaüs, Vol V:17


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Annular solar eclipse

Oct 6, 350 BCE at 8:25 AM local solar time visible at Thebes as a partial solar eclipse of 0.928 magnitude..

Quoting Plutarch re Pelopidas’ eclipse:


 “31. . .  2 The Thebans readily decreed what they desired, and soon everything was in readiness and the commander about to set out, when the sun was eclipsed and the city was covered with darkness in the day-time.[1]

Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Pelopidas, 31:2


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total solar eclipse

July 4, 336 BCE visible as a 85% partial eclipse from Syracuse, Sicily.

Quoting Plutarch re Helicon’s eclipse:


 Helicon of Cyzicus, one of Plato's intimates, predicted an eclipse of the sun. This took place as he had predicted, in consequence of which he was admired by the tyrant and presented with a talent of silver.


Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Dion, 19:6


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total lunar eclipse

September 20, 331 BCE


Gaugamela, Iraq horizon: moonrise: 17:52:33; sunset:  18:03:29; total eclipse from 20:36:32 until 21:47:13


Syracuse, Italy horizon: partially eclipsed moonrise: 18:00:10; sunset:  18:07:19; total eclipse from 18:52:00 until 19:58:00

Quoting Plutarch re Alexander the Great’s eclipse:



6 Now, the great battle against Dareius was not fought at Arbela, as most writers state, but at Gaugamela.59 7 The word signifies, we are told, "camel's house," since one of the ancient kings of the country, after escaping from his enemies on a swift camel, gave the animal a home here, assigning certain villages and revenues for its maintenance. 8 It so happened that in the month Boëdromion the moon suffered an eclipse,[2] about the beginning of the Mysteries at Athens, and on the eleventh night after the eclipse, the armies being now in sight of one another, Dareius kept his forces under arms, and held a review of them by torch-light; 9 but Alexander, while his Macedonians slept, himself passed the night in front of his tent with his seer Aristander, celebrating certain mysterious sacred rites and sacrificing to the god Fear.


(Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Alexander, Vol 4:6)



Quoting Plutarch re Dion’s eclipse:


23… 4 It was not until later times that the radiant repute of Plato, because of the life the man led, and because he subjected the compulsions of the physical world to divine and more sovereign principles, took away the obloquy of such doctrines as these, and gave their science free course among all men. At any rate, his friend Dion, although the moon suffered an eclipse at the time when he was about to set out from Zacynthus on his voyage against Dionysius, was in no wise disturbed, but put to sea, landed at Syracuse, and drove out the tyrant.[3]


(Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Nicias)



24 But after the libations and the customary prayers, the moon was eclipsed.[4]


25: 6 Thereupon a boisterous wind from the north rushed down upon them, raised a great sea, and drove the ships away from Sicily, while flashes of lightning and peals of thunder, now that Arcturus was just rising,[5] conspired to pour down from the heavens against storm of furious rain.



(Plutarch, Parallel Lives, The Life of Dion)




Quoting Plinivs Secundus re both Alexander’s and Dion’s eclipse:



“Of the unequall rising of the Starres: of the Eclipse, both where and how it commeth.

“...At what time as Alexander the Great wan that famous victorie at Arbela, the moone (by report) was eclipsed at the second houre of the night: but at the very same time in Sicilie, she [came forth (out of the eclipse…) / ToL edit]

(C. Plinivs Secvndvs, The Second Booke of the Historie of Natvre, Chapter LXX)



“Ideo defectus solis ac lunae vespertinos orientis incolae non sentiunt nec matutinos ad occasum habitantes, meridianos vero serius nobis illi. apud Arbilam Magni Alexandri victoria luna defecisse noctis secunda hora est prodita eademque in Sicilia exoriens.”

(C. Plinivs Secvndvs, Liber II, Chapter LXXII)



For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total solar eclipse

August 15, 310 BCE

1.       Interactive Google map

2.       Saros map

3.       Total and Annular Solar Eclipse Paths 320-301 BCE

4.       Maps of all solar eclipses from 317 BCE through 301 BCE

Quoting Diodorus Sicilus re Agathocles’ eclipse of the sun:


5… 5 On the next day there occurred such an eclipse of the sun that utter darkness set in and the stars were seen everywhere;** wherefore Agathocles' men, believing that the prodigy portended misfortune for them, fell into even greater anxiety about the future…”


Diodorus Sicilus, Library of History, Book XX, with original editor’s footnotes.



There are two reliable anchor points for the ancient Olympiad calendar: 1) July 29, 588 BCE, and 2) Nov 24, 29 CE.



Notice: Although this solar eclipse is no doubt the one experienced by Agathocles, it is being incorrectly associated with “Ol. 117, 3” and can definitely not be relied upon as a certain anchor point for the reckoning of Olympiad years! For details, please cf. my article under this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total lunar eclipse

November 14, 222 BCE visible for less than ½ hour as a partially eclipsed moon in west north west at sunset/moonrise.

Quoting Polybius re Attalus’ eclipse of the moon:


78 While he [Attalus] was here, an eclipse of the moon took place,[6] and the Gauls, who had all along been aggrieved by the hardships of the march — since they made the campaign accompanied by their wives and children, who followed them in wagons — 2 considering this a bad omen, refused to advance further. 3 King Attalus, to whom they rendered no service of vital importance, and who noticed that they detached themselves from the column on the march and encamped by themselves and were altogether most insubordinate and self-assertive, found himself in no little perplexity.


(Polybius, The Histories, Book V)


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total solar eclipse

March 14, 190 BCE at 7 AM local solar time.

Quoting Cassius Dio re Hannibal’s eclipse of the sun:


Accordingly, the Romans entered the conflict well marshalled and eager, but Hannibal and the Carthaginians listless and dejected. This was owing in part to a total eclipse of the sun; for in view of the other circumstances, Hannibal suspected that this, too, augured nothing auspicious for them.


(Cassius Dio, Roman History, Vol. II:14, p. 264)

For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Partial lunar eclipse

October 3, 145 BCE visible from the Baghdad vicinity, beginning at sunset / moonrise at about 5:45 PM. Maximum magnitude was 48.8%

Quoting A. T. Olmstead, Cuneiform Texts and Hellenistic Chronology:


“Mithradates I conquered Seleucia before the lunarc eclipse of year 171, Duzu 13 (July 22, 141 B.C.)…


(A. T. Olmstead, Cuneiform Texts and Hellenistic Chronology, Classical Philology, Vol. 32, No. 1 (Jan. 1937,) pp 1-14.)


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


Total lunar eclipse

June 1, 139 BCE between 8 PM and 1 AM

Quoting Plutarch:

“7 Now, when night had come, and the soldiers, after supper, were betaking themselves to rest and sleep, on a sudden the moon, which was full and high in the heavens, grew dark, lost its light, took on all sorts of colours in succession, and finally disappeared.

8 The Romans, according to their custom, tried to call her light back by the clashing of bronze utensils and by holding up many blazing fire-brands and torches towards the heavens; the Macedonians, however, did nothing of this sort, but amazement and terror possessed their camp, and a rumour quietly spread among many of them that the portent signified an eclipse of a king. 9 Now, Aemilius was not altogether without knowledge and experiences of the irregularities of eclipses, which, at fixed periods, carry the moon in her course into the shadow of the earth and conceal her from sight, until she passes beyond the region of shadow and reflects again the light of the sun; 10 however, since he was very devout and given to sacrifices and divination, as soon as he saw the moon beginning to emerge from the shadow, he sacrificed eleven heifers to her…”

Plutarch, The Life of Aemilius 17.7


Quoting C. Plinivs Secvndvs:


The reason verily of both eclipses, the first Romane that published abroad and divulged, was Sulpitius Gallus, who afterwards was Consul, together with M. Marcellus: but at that time being a Colonell, the day before that king Perseus was vanquished by Paulus, he was brought forth by the Generall into open audience before the whole hoast, to fore-tell the eclipse which should happen the next morrow: whereby he delivered the armie from all pensivenesse and fear, which might have troubled them in the time of battaile, and within a while after hee compiled also a booke thereof. But among the Greekes, Thales Milosius was the first that found it out, who in the 48 Olympias, and the fourth yeere thereof, did prognosticate and foreshew the Sunnes eclipse that happened in the raigne of Halyattes, and in the 170 yeere after the foundation of the citie of Rome.


C. Plinivs Secvndvs, The Second Booke of the Historie of Natvre, Chap. VII


Notice: For a detailed analysis of this placement in time of the above quoted events re the Battle at Pydna, that is, vs. the common placement some thirty years prior, please cf. my article at this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


A partial lunar eclipse (Maximum magnitude: 0.5098.)

As seen from the Numantine horizon in Spain on May 1, 109 BCE: Moonrise at 18:37 with 24% umbral eclipse-19:04; penumbral eclipse -20:26. Sunset was at 19:08 local solar time.

Quotes re Aemilius Lepidus’ lunar eclipse:


“[§82] The siege of Pallantia was long protracted, the food supply of the Romans failed, and they began to suffer from hunger. All their animals perished and many of the men died of want. The generals, Aemilius and Brutus, kept heart for a long time. Being compelled to yield at last, they gave an order suddenly one night, about the last watch, to retreat. The tribunes and centurions ran hither and thither to hasten the movement, so as to get them all away before daylight. Such was the confusion that they left behind everything, and even the sick and wounded, who clung to them and besought them not to abandon them. Their retreat was disorderly and confused and much like a flight, the Pallantines hanging on their flanks and rear and doing great damage from early dawn till evening. When night came, the Romans, worn with toil and hunger, threw themselves on the ground by companies just as it happened, and the Pallantines, moved by some divine interposition, went back to their own country. And this was what happened to Aemilius.“

(Appian’s History of Rome)



“Suffering from a lack of food, the Romans were compelled to retreat and desperately tried to decamp under cover of darkness. "Such was the confusion that they left behind everything, and even the sick and wounded, who clung to them and besought them not to abandon them." Only a lunar eclipse saved the Romans from being pursued. Lepidus was deprived of his command while still in the field (the first time that such an abrogation ever had occurred) and recalled to Rome in disgrace.”


(The Celtiberian War)


Notice: For a detailed analysis of this placement in time of the above quoted events re the Aemilius Lepidus’ lunar eclipse, please cf. my article at this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


A comet

49 BCE, April 14 – May 12



Pliny quoting Augustus: “ ‘On the very days of my Games a comet was visible for seven days in the northern part of the sky. It was [in “the eleventh hour of the day”], and was a bright star visible from all lands.’ ” (Pliny, Natural History, 2.23.)



Quoting Ronald L. Conte Jr.:


“This comet is often depicted in ancient images of Julius Caesar.


“In 49 B.C., Chinese astronomers recorded seeing a comet during the lunar month of April 14 to May 12 in the constellation Cassiopeia.819 This constellation, as seen from Rome during that time period, was in the northern part of the sky. The comet of 49 B.C. would also have been seen in the northern part of the sky, matching the words of Augustus closely. Also, the time of year is… correct for the comet following the death of Julius Caesar, who died in mid March.


“The comet associated with the death of Julius Caesar was seen either an hour before, or a little after, sunset. This time frame for the visibility of the comet fits the 49 B.C. comet. During this time period (April 14 to May 12), the constellation Cassiopeia was above the horizon and clearly visible from Rome before, during, and after sunset.820 At about the time of sunset, Cassiopeia was almost exactly due north, as viewed from Rome. Thus the comet of 49 B.C. would have been clearly visible in the north, as the sky first began to dim, a little after sunset.


“Based on the above information, the comet of 49 B.C. is the only fit for the information given by Pliny and Augustus for the comet following the death of Julius Caesar. This comet was located in the northern part of the sky, was visible about the eleventh hour of the day, and could well have been rising at that time of day.


“The above information on both comets and solar eclipses points to the same conclusion… Julius Caesar died in mid March of 49 B.C...”


810 Pliny, Natural History, 2.23. The same comet is also mentioned by numerous other ancient writers. See Kronk, Cometography, p. 22, for a listing.

819 Kronk, Cometography, p. 21.

820 RedShift 3 astronomy software.




Cometary data are from Gary W. Kronk, Cometography, A Catalog of Comets, (Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press, 1999)



Solar eclipse


Photo - View from the moon


Movie - View from the moon


49 BCE, August 9, at 10:17 UT

Photo - View from Rome


Photo - View from Rome less daylight

Pliny: “Portentous and protracted eclipses of the sun occur, such as the one after the murder of Caesar the dictator….” Pliny, Natural History, 2.30. Julius Caesar is obviously the one referred to as the dictator who was murdered. The circumstances of his death, described by Suetonius, Josephus, and others make it clear Julius Caesar was murdered. And he was long thought of, and referred to, in ancient Rome, as a dictator.


A comet

32 BCE,  in the lunar month beginning on February 6

Dio: “…and for many days a flaming torch was seen to rise over the sea in the direction of Greece, and to soar aloft in the sky.” Dio, The Roman History, Penguin Books, p. 40. See also: Dio, Roman History, Volume V, Loeb Classical Library, 50.8.2.


“The Star of Bethlehem?”

Matthew 2:1-9…


- A partial lunar eclipse and a series of conjunctions between Jupiter, Venus, Mercury, the Moon, the star Regulus in the Lion constellation, the eastern horizon; with Jupiter on one occasion “standing in the south,” while turning to retro-grade motion while being positioned 10 degrees straight south from zenith… that is, in the direction of Bethlehem (as perceived from Jerusalem…)

16 BCE thru 14 BCE:

1) July 31, 16 BCE at 1:52 AM;

2) about 3 AM, on Sept 1, 16 BCE;

3) mid-July, 15 BCE;

4) Oct 6, 15 BCE – 2 separate eclipses!;

5) November 17, 15 BCE; and

6) Jan 10, 14 BCE

This item was created shortly after midnight on 5941[(?)] 09 22 2027 [2010-12-29]

on the incentive of a good friend; after listening to Rick Larson’s presentation [on God Channel]

of certain celestial events in 3 BCE and 2 BCE, purportedly The Star of Bethlehem,

which events, in many particulars, are reminiscent of the series of events here being presented;

and after reviewing once again the productions of Earnest L. Martin.


The Star of Bethlehem?



On July 31, 16 BCE there was at 1:52 AM rising above the eastern horizon a conjunction of Jupiter and Venus in the constellation Gemini, the Twins, and two days later at the same time the two of them, the planets, were joined by the aging moon. This would be at the time of the (4th or) 5th moon of the Scripture year and also at the time of the (4th or) 5th month of Elizabeth's pregnancy. Cf. Luke 1:24, 36!

At the time when the cock crows, about 3 AM, on Sept 1, 16 BCE, Venus could be seen rising over the eastern [Jerusalem] horizon while in conjunction with Regulus, in the constellation Lion, while also in conjunction with the Moon. This would correspond to the 26th day of the (5th or) 6th month of the Scripture year, and thus also with the time when Mary got her message from the angel Gabriel as recorded in Luke 1:26-38. While the last of the stars were disappearing in the dawn of the morning, Mercury, “the messenger star,” could be seen rising above the eastern horizon while trailing behind Jupiter, Venus, and the Moon.

After the middle of July, 15 BCE, within (a few days, or) a month of Yeshua's delivery, Jupiter became visible rising over the eastern horizon shortly before sunrise (thus becoming the ruler of the day, so to speak) while located quite close to the mouth of the Lion, the mouth of the Hydra, and the mouth of the Crab (cf. Rev 12:4!) and while on its way towards Regulus, with which it was in conjunction on Oct 6, 15 BCE, while there was on the very same evening also a 60% partial lunar eclipse with its maximum at the time of moonrise.[7]

A short distance after passing Regulus, Jupiter would then appear to stand still on November 17, 15 BCE at about 4:45 AM before turning back, and then again coming into conjunction with Regulus on Jan 11, 14 BCE. Obviously these latter dates, October through January, would correspond to a time when Yeshua had been nursing his mother for 4-7 months’ time, thus being also within the correct time frame for the visiting men from the East as recorded in Matthew.

At about 1 AM on Jan 11, 14 BCE Jupiter would have been visible at its highest position on the sky that night [above Bethlehem,] only about 10 degrees off zenith... in a southerly direction… That is, in the very same direction in which Bethlehem is located relative to Jerusalem. However, that is probably not the significant part of that celestial event: The one really significant astronomical event is the timing and the position at the point of Jupiter stopping and turning into an apparent retrograde motion upon the sky. This event was the one that took place at about 4:45 AM Nov 17, 15 BCE… at which time Jupiter was indeed located 12 degrees exactly south of the zenith of the sky! (cf. Matthew 2:1, 9!) Thus, if indeed this is the real star of Bethlehem referenced by Matthew, then this last dated event would be the one defining for us the exact date of the wise men leaving Jerusalem for Bethlehem! That is, they left Jerusalem for Bethlehem on the early morning of Nov 17, 15 BCE, which would be Bul 25, 15 BCE, the First Day of the 2nd week following King Jeroboam’s feast day. Interestingly, I’ve come to notice that said reckoning of time following Bul 15, seems to correlate with the current tradition of Christmas Advent, that is, this event of the wise men seems to correlate with the First Day of the 2nd Advent before Christmas, or with the First Day of the 2nd week of priestly temple services, or the 9th day of 50…[8] Cf. 1 Kings 12:32!

On another cue, I notice that the conjunction between Jupiter and Regulus was less intimate on Jan 11, 14 BCE than on its first approach on Oct 6, 15 BCE. Could it be that the wise men took this as a clue from the Almighty that it would be better not to approach Herod so closely upon their returning home?

(For those who perhaps didn’t already know:) Jupiter and Regulus are both being associated with kingship, while Venus and the Moon are both being associated with motherhood and fertility.


How's that for a variety show and for the smiles of the One Most High of all, the Almighty!

Praise the Lord of Hosts, the Creator of the Universe!



A comet

15/16 BCE,  most likely sometime between March and December

Associated historical events: 1. After Agrippa died.  2. Yeshua’s birth / Quirinius – at the time of the census / Augustus. “…connected with Agrippa’s death.” Dio, Roman History, Volume VI, Loeb Classical Library, 54.30.1.


A total lunar eclipse

9 BCE, “Nov 28  18:41 t” - UT

Josephus: “But Herod deprived this Matthias of the high priesthood, and burnt the other Matthias, who had raised the sedition, with his companions, alive. And that very night there was an eclipse of the moon.” Josephus, Antiquties, XVII:6:4. 


“The sun suffered a total eclipse”

5 CE, March 28 (hybrid) and September 22 (Annular) – both eclipses visible in north east Africa, or…


9 CE, January 15 (annular) visible on the African east coast and Madagascar, or…


10 CE, June 30 at 11:19 hours (time of greatest eclipse). Only visible as partial eclipse over the Roman Empire.

Photo – Eclipse as viewed from north Germany Photo Movie

Dio Cassius describes a solar eclipse as one of the portents occurring before the death of Caesar Augustus:


During a horse-race at the Augustalia, which were celebrated in honour of his birthday [Caesar Augustus’ birthday was September 23 (pre-Julian revision date,)] a madman seated himself in the chair which was dedicated to Julius Caesar, and taking his crown, put it on. This incident disturbed everybody, for it seemed to have some bearing upon Augustus, as, indeed, proved true. For in the following year, when Sextus Apuleius and Sextus Pompeius were consuls, Augustus set out for Campania, and after superintending the games at Neapolis, passed away shortly afterward at Nola. Indeed, not a few omens had appeared, and these by no means difficult of interpretation, all pointing to this fate for him. Thus, the sun suffered a total eclipse and most of the sky seemed to be on fire; glowing embers appeared to be falling from it and blood-red comets were seen.” (Dio, Roman History, Volume VII, Loeb Classical Library, 56.29.3.)




A total lunar eclipse

10 CE, December 10 at 03:30 UTC  (04:44± solar time in Pannonia)

Dio :


For the troops in Pannonia had mutinied as soon as they learned of the death of Augustus…But when the moon suffered eclipse, they took the omen to heart and their spirit abated, so that they did no further harm to this detachment and dispatched envoys again to Tiberius.” (Cassius Dio, Roman History, LVII, 4, Loeb Classical Library,  Translation by Earnest Cary. Cf. this link.)



A solar eclipse

April 8, 4 CE; March 28, 5 CE; September 22, 5 CE; February 15, 17 CE; or June 29, 19 CE.


Cf. NASA’s solar eclipse paths (cashed)

Origen (“ca 185 - ca 254 A.D.,”) "Contra Celsus" (248 A.D.:)


"And with regard to the eclipse in the time of Tiberius Caesar, in whose reign Jesus appears to have been crucified, and the great earthquakes which then took place, Phlegon too, I think, has written in the thirteenth or fourteenth book of his Chronicles;"


(Origen, Contra Celsum, II:33 (Google Book search;) Origen, Contra Celsus, Book II, Chapter 33 (New Advent))



"Phlegon mentioned the eclipse which took place during the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus and no other (eclipse); it is clear that he did not know from his sources about any (similar) eclipse in previous times . . . and this is shown by the historical account of Tiberius Caesar." - Phiopon, De. opif. mund. II21

"Phlegon records that, in the time of Tiberius Cæsar, at full moon, there was a full eclipse of the sun from the sixth hour to the ninth - manifestly that one of which we speak. But what has an eclipse in common with an earthquake, the rending rocks, and the resurrection of the dead, and so great a perturbation throughout the universe? . . . And calculation makes out that the period of 70 weeks, as noted in Daniel, is completed at this time." - Julius Africanus, Chronography, 18.1

"In the fourth year, however, of Olympiad 202, an eclipse of the sun happened, greater and more excellent than any that had happened before it; at the sixth hour, day turned into dark night, so that the stars were seen in the sky, and an earthquake in Bithynia toppled many buildings of the city of Nicaea." - Phlegon's 13th book quoted in Jerome's translation of Eusebius' Chronicle, 202 Olympiad

(The last three quotes above were found at Never Thirsty)


About about A.D. 52 [1] Thallus wrote a history about the Middle East from the time of the Trojan War to the first century A.D. The work has been lost and the only record we have of his writings is through Julius Africanus (AD 221). Below Julius Africanus refers to Christ's crucifixion and the darkness that covered the earth prior to his death.


"On the whole world there pressed a most fearful darkness; and the rocks were rent by an earthquake, and many places in Judea and other districts were thrown down. This darkness Thallus, in the 263 third book of his History, calls, as appears to me without reason, an eclipse of the sun. For the Hebrews celebrate the passover on the 14th day according to the moon, and the passion of our Savior fails on the day before the passover [see Phlegon]; but an eclipse of the sun takes place only when the moon comes under the sun. And it cannot happen at any other time but in the interval between the first day of the new moon and the last of the old, that is, at their junction: how then should an eclipse be supposed to happen when the moon is almost diametrically opposite the sun?" - Julius Africanus, Chronography, 18.1

(The last two quotes above were found at Never Thirsty)






A Total Solar eclipse visible from one end of the Roman Empire to the other from the 6th thru the 9th hour...

June 21, 19 CE

Albeit having taken place 40 days after the actual day of Yeshua’s crucifixion on Friday May 12, 19 CE, this solar eclipse fits the records of Matthew, Mark, and Luke as recorded in these passages:

Matthew 27:45 KJV  Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.

Mark 15:33 KJV  And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.

Luke 23:44 KJV  And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.


As best I can tell there must have been an early error either in the transcription of the original Hebrew manuscripts of the Gospels, if those were accurately quoting a Roman/Latin date, such as “XI. Kal. Iul.,” or else even earlier, in an official Hebrew translation of a Roman report of the solar eclipse issued in the Latin language, which report was subsequently used by Matthew, Mark, and Luke.


Please note that such and error as the above said does not in any way deter from the truthfulness of the above passages so far as the direct observations of the firsthand witnesses are concerned, provided only that the local weather situation created a scenario such as reported by said Gospel authors.  More…


Phases of the moon correlations

1) Tishri 1, 1 BCE [Common Jewish calendar] vs. September 19, 1 BCE.


2) Adar 4, 23 CE vs. March 16, 23 CE.

Two examples out of many, too numerous to count, within this revised chronology:


Re Caesar Tiberius’ reign:


“Dio… states that Tiberius died on March 26, after a reign of 22 years, 7 months, and 7 days.977.

977 Dio, Roman History, Volume VII, Loeb Classical Library, 58.28.5.

(From Conte, Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.)


An important confirmation and a note re Dio: If Dio’s statement above is correct and if he is using a Julian calendar and if Tiberius died March 26, 23 CE, then, per the above quote, Tiberius’ reign began September 19 or 20, 1 BCE depending upon whether or not Dio is counting the days inclusively. It is important to notice that Tishri 1, 1 BCE (the beginning Tiberius 1st civil year of reign as reckoned by a Jewish calendar, but not including his accession year) may well correspond to September 19, 1 BCE, which is evidence that Dio is basing his count of Tiberius’ reign upon a Jewish source, very possibly upon Josephus?, while probably not fully comprehending all the intricacies of the time reckoning used by his Jewish source. However, the fact that Dio’s date falls on Tishri 1 is strong confirmation that indeed Tiberius’ reign began in 1 BCE, because from 11 BCE through 18 CE  only 1 BCE and 8 CE allows for Tishri 1 falling on either September 19 or 20, i.e. it is a relatively rare incidence.



        A.            “This was told to Tiberius by one of Agrippa's domestics, who thereupon was very angry, and ordered Agrippa to be bound, and had him very ill-treated in the prison for six months, until Tiberius died, after he had reigned twenty-two years, six months, and three days.” (Josephus, Wars of the Jews, II, Ch. 9:5.)

           B.            “Suetonius states that Tiberius died on March 16. 976”

976 Suetonius, The Twelve Caesars, p. 150. See also: Suetonius, Lives of the Caesars, Loeb Classical Library, 3.73.1.

(Conte, Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.)


Notice: For the years 16 CE until 42 CE, 23 CE, the only year where the 4th day of a biblical month may possibly fall on March 16 is 23 CE. This fact is strong confirmation for this being the correct year of Tiberius’ death. Dio provides further confirmation, cf. above!



[Cf. #32!]

A solar eclipse and a proclamation issued by Caesar Claudius.

26 CE, Aug 1

Photo      Movie

Cf. item #32below!


Shortly before the death of Caesar Caius [Caius died on January 24, 27 CE] there was a total solar eclipse on the birthday (August 1) of Claudius (who was then probably a Roman consul and) who was to become the next emperor on the Roman throne. Although Claudius may or may not have been aware of this celestial event at the time it occurred, it might have had an impact upon him at a later date.  Dio states:


“In mental ability he [Claudius] was by no means inferior, as his faculties had been in constant training (in fact, he had actually written some historical treatises); but he was sickly in body, so that his head and hands shook slightly.” (Cassius Dio, Roman History, Book LX.)



A solar eclipse

29 CE, Nov 24 late AM


NASA: Path, timing (path cashed; for Jerusalem solar time add 2 hrs 21 min to UT; i.e. 09:12 UT = 09:12 + 2:21 = 11:33 AM Jerusalem solar time = “6th hour” = “about noon” = “at midday”) and detailed eclipse data.






Close up photo

Close up movie


Photo of total eclipse as viewed from W Turkey


12 min (real eclipse time) movie of total eclipse as viewed from W Turkey


Notice: This solar eclipse is one of two very important anchor points for the Olympic calendar and its use in ancient times. The first one is the July 29, 588 BCE annular solar eclipse. (A third one, August 15, 310 BCE, is being claimed by some as an anchor point for the ancient Olympiad calendar, but this one was not specifically dated by the original source in terms of Olympiad years and cannot be relied upon as a certain anchor point in time. Please cf. my article at this link for further details!)



Quoting Origen (“ca 185 - ca 254 AD:”)

"And Phlegon also who compiled the Olympiads writes about the same things in his 13th book in the following words: 'In the fourth year of the 202nd Olympiad, an eclipse of the Sun took place greater than any previously known, and night came on at the sixth hour of the day, so that stars actually appeared in the sky; and a great earthquake took place in Bithynia and overthrew the greater part of Niceaea;"

(“From: Phlegon, Olympiades, fragment 17. Quoted in Historical Eclipses and Earth's Rotation, by F Richard Stephenson, Cambridge University Press, 1997, page 359.v;” Solar Eclipse Newsletter, Vol. 8:11, Nov 2003. Cf. Google Book Search and MrEclipse.com.)



Quoting Paul, the Apostle:

“Salute… Phlegon… and the brethren which are with them.”

(From The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans, Chapter 16, verse 14, KJV.)



Considering the date of this event (29 CE) while considering also the date of Paul’s Epistle of the Romans (43 CE,) I find no good reason for not believing that this Phlegon of Paul is the very same one as is being referenced by Origen above, do you? Indeed, considering the timing specified by Phlegon, “at the sixth hour of the day,” I find it plausible that either Phlegon himself was one among Saul’s party, or else that he received his report from one who was among those men traveling with Saul to Damascus… Cf. Saul’s experience as reported by Luke in Acts 9:3-9; 22:6-11 as further analyzed and discussed also below!  However, based upon Paul’s experience as recorded in Acts, where Paul seems to be referencing a halo and no mention of stars of total darkness, I get the impression that indeed Paul was not within the area of total eclipse. Nevertheless, Phlegon could have gotten his initial report of this event from Saul’s party, and then, being interested in pursuing this event, he may have investigated and gotten reports from firsthand witnesses of the total solar eclipse, complete with darkness and stars, from people located within the area north and north east from Damascus as seen at this link.

Notice that for someone to have experienced firsthand this solar eclipse within the 6th hour of the day, local time, he must have been located somewhere along the path of the solar eclipse shadow between the point where said solar eclipse path intersects longitude 35° E and 44° E, that is, no further west than Mersin or Adana on the southern coast of Turkey and no further east than Hafar Al Batin in Saudi Arabia (cf. the interactive Google map at this link!) That is, said report of Phlegon did indeed originate somewhere not far from Damascus! Saul’s party was traveling towards Damascus, which does not exclude the possibility of their arriving from the north or north east. Notice, however, that Phlegon reports that the stars were seen during this eclipse. For the stars to have been seen the observer would have had to have been located between the blue parallel lines shown in the above linked map. Per the data available by means of said interactive Google map, in Damascus the solar disc diameter was only 97% eclipsed, which, however, certainly does make this solar eclipse noticeable from Damascus even though it would not totally have darkened the skies from that particular vantage point. [I notice however, that on my Starry Night Backyard software (ver. 3.1.2; and likewise on Starry Night Pro Plus 6.2.3… but not 6.4.3!), this eclipse is showing as total for an observer located at Damascus… A newer version of Starry Night (Pro Plus ver. 6.4.3) correlates better with the latest version of NASA’s website, but whereas the discrepancy on the earlier version was about 112 miles off NASA’s eclipse path in a SW direction, version 6.4.3 is off about 80 miles in a NE direction… Indeed, that makes me reflect also upon the issue of how much the NASA eclipse path might deviate from the actual real time eclipse path…]



Notice and disclaimer re the below TLT translations re Saul’s conversion experience as quoted from Acts:

Although I’ve tried my best to get appropriate help with the below translations re Saul’s conversion experience, I have yet to find someone fluent in Greek, especially ancient Greek, who is willing to confirm or agree with me that these texts do indeed represent a solar eclipse. May I suggest that you, the reader, make your own assessment based upon the best text material available below and elsewhere?

In the mean time I very much do appreciate all the help I have been getting with these translations! Please notice that all responsibility for any errors in the TLT translations, not also inherent in the KJV translations, are on me and on none other.


Cf. Saul’s conversion experience:


Acts 9:3  TLT And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there appeared to him a halo shaped star removing the light off of the heaven:


Act 9:3  KJV And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:


Act 9:3 GNT-TR+  εν1722 PREP  δε1161 CONJ  τω3588 T-DSM  πορευεσθαι4198 V-PNN  εγενετο1096 V-2ADI-3S  αυτον846 P-ASM  εγγιζειν1448 V-PAN  τη3588 T-DSF  δαμασκω1154 N-DSF  και2532 CONJ  εξαιφνης1810 ADV  περιηστραψεν4015 V-AAI-3S  αυτον846 P-ASM  φως5457 N-NSN  απο575 PREP  του3588 T-GSM  ουρανου3772 N-GSM  



Acts 22:6 TLT  And it came to pass, that, as I made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly out of the sky the rays of a halo shaped star was manifested round about me.


Act 22:6 KJV And it came to pass, that, as I made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me.


Act 22:6 GNT-TR+  εγενετο1096 V-2ADI-3S  δε1161 CONJ  μοι3427 P-1DS  πορευομενω4198 V-PNP-DSM  και2532 CONJ  εγγιζοντι1448 V-PAP-DSM  τη3588 T-DSF  δαμασκω1154 N-DSF  περι4012 PREP  μεσημβριαν3314 N-ASF  εξαιφνης1810 ADV  εκ1537 PREP  του3588 T-GSM  ουρανου3772 N-GSM  περιαστραψαι4015 V-AAN  φως5457 N-NSN  ικανον2425 A-NSN  περι4012 PREP  εμε1691 P-1AS  







Translating Acts 26:13, Paul’s own quoted words, word for word from the Greek:


Acts 26:13 TLT ημέρας μέσης (At midday) κατά την οδόν (while on route) είδον (I saw) βασιλεύ (Your Majesty) ουρανόθεν (from heaven) υπέρ (covering) [or] (the upper portion of) την λαμπρότητα του ηλίου (the solar disc) περιλάμψαν με (investing-me-) και τους (and those) συν εμοί πορευομένους (journeying with me) (…with-a-glorious) φως (light.)



Acts 26:13 TLT At midday while traveling I saw the moon covering the brilliancy of the sun light that was shining around me and those journeying with me.



Acts 26:13 TLT At midday while traveling I saw, Your Majesty, from heaven the upper sliver of the solar disc investing-me-… and those journeying with me with-a-glorious light.


Or perhaps something like my first impression of this passage:

Acts 26:13 TLT At midday, while traveling, I beheld a sovereign from the sky across the brilliancy of the sun being illuminated on its edges by a halo and shining round about me and them which journeyed with me.



Act 26:13 KJV At midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them which journeyed with me.


Act 26:13 GNT-TR+  ημερας2250 N-GSF  μεσης3319 A-GSF  κατα2596 PREP  την3588 T-ASF  οδον3598 N-ASF  ειδον1492 V-2AAI-1S  βασιλευ935 N-VSM  ουρανοθεν3771 ADV  υπερ5228 PREP  την3588 T-ASF  λαμπροτητα2987 N-ASF  του3588 T-GSM  ηλιου2246 N-GSM  περιλαμψαν4034 V-AAP-ASN  με3165 P-1AS  φως5457 N-ASN  και2532 CONJ  τους3588 T-APM  συν4862 PREP  εμοι1698 P-1DS  πορευομενους4198 V-PNP-APM  




A proclamation by Caesar Claudius:


- Re a potentially visible total solar eclipse on his birthday.

Proclamation: Issued some time between 29‑38 CE.


Solar eclipse: August 1, 45 CE; greatest eclipse at 09:18 UT (10:06 AM Rome solar time,) but only visible as partial eclipse ( < 40% ) from Rome.


A Solar Eclipse was Predicted on Caesar Claudius’ Birthday


Quoting Dio:


“Since there was to be an eclipse of the sun on his birthday, he feared that there might be some disturbance in consequence, inasmuch as some other portents had already occurred; he therefore issued a proclamation in which he stated not only the fact that there was to be an eclipse, and when, and for how long, but also the reasons for which this was bound to happen… This, then, is what happens to the sun, and it was made public by Claudius at that time.” (Dio, Roman History, Volume VII, Loeb Classical Library, 60.26.1.)


-          Dio’s statement re Claudius’ proclamation re a future solar eclipse on his birthday is found in a context that makes it apparent that the proclamation was made no earlier than in Claudius’ 3rd year of reign (29 CE) and no later than two years prior to his being poisoned and killed (38 CE; cf. footnote 1.)

-          Notice that there is nothing in Dio’s statement implying that said solar eclipse was expected to occur in the year of Claudius’ proclamation about it! It was a (potentially visible) future event several years yet in the future:”

-          The only years in the entire first century CE when an August 1 solar eclipse occurred, were 7, 26, 45, and 64 CE. There are no August 1 astronomical new moons (and thus no potential August 1 solar eclipses) between the 26 CE and 45 CE total solar eclipses! (The only July 31 solar eclipse during the 1st century occurred in 18 CE.)

-          Dio’s statement, “some other portents had already occurred,” could refer to just about anything. Based upon the within chronology the following are potentially visible solar eclipses and lunar eclipses that occurred during those years of Claudius’ reign (29-38 CE:)

·         Cf. footnote 2!

·         In 36 CE there were two total lunar eclipses in one calendar year, both visible from Rome. Although lunar eclipses occurs every year, two total lunar eclipses within one year being visible from one place is a somewhat rare event and the only such event that occurred between 26 and 40 CE.


Footnote: Cf. the following sequence of words from  Cassius Dio, Roman History, Book LX: “He was in his fiftieth year…,” “The next year…,” “The next year…,” “there was to be an eclipse of the sun on his birthday…,” “at the close of that year…,” and Book LXI: “In the following year, which was the eight hundredth year of Rome…,” and “during the night the poison took effect and he passed away…”


Footnote 2: Cf. the following solar eclipses, each of which occurred during Rome daylight hours, and which may accordingly have been a cause for concern if known of by Claudius in advance: 1) Nov 24, 29 CE (total;)  2) Apr 28, 32 CE (partial;) 3) Sept 23, 32 CE (partial;) 4) Mar 19, 33 CE (total;) 5) Sept 12, 33 CE (annular; cf. August 1, 2008!) 6) Sept 1, 34 CE (annular;) 7) Aug 10, 36 CE (partial;) 8) Dec 25, 37 CE (annular;) and 9) Jun 21, 38 CE (hybrid.)



A comet

39 CE, March 13 to April 30


Gary W. Kronk:


The Hou Han shu (445) is the oldest source describing this "broom star". The object appeared in the Mao [the Pleiades] on 39 March 13. The date and location indicate it was in the evening sky, implying a UT of March 13.5. The object is described as exhibiting "rays measuring 30°." The text adds, "It moved slightly toward the northwest and entered Ying–Shih [α and β Pegasi]. It then trespassed against Li–Kung [η, λ, μ, ο, τ, and υ Pegasi]." The comet was last detected after it had reached Tung–Pi [α Andromedae and γ Pegasi] on April 30. The date and location indicate it was in the morning sky, implying a UT of April 29.8. It "went out of sight after an appearance of 49 days."

“Full moon: March 28, April 27

“Sources: Hou Han shu (445), pp. 148–9; A. G. Pingré (1783), pp. 284, 581–2; J. Williams (1871), p. 11; Ho Peng Yoke (1962), pp. 148–9; I. Hasegawa (1980), p. 66.Kronk, Cometography, Vol 1.



Conte quoting Gary W. Kronk:


“A comet sighting was recorded by the ancient Chinese astronomers in A.D. 39, from March 13 to April 30. This comet had a conspicuous tail, with rays as long as 30 degrees. [Kronk, Cometography, p. 27. ]” (Conte Jr., Ronald L., Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.)







“main omens of Claudius’ death included the rise of a long-haired star, known as a comet….” Suetonius, The Twelve Caesars, Penguin Books, 5.46.


“a long-haired star, known as a comet.” Suetonius, The Twelve Caesars, Penguin Books, 5.46.


exortus[9] crinitae[10] stellae,[11] quam[12] cometen[13] uocant[14]

(C. Suetonius Tranquillus, De Vita Caesarum (ed. Maximilian Ihm) life cl., chapter 46, section 1)





Pliny the Elder:


“Pliny the Elder lists four comets which were seen (during the reigns of various emperors) “in the western sky,” including the comet seen “about the time of the poisoning” of Claudius Caesar. [Pliny, Natural History, 2.23.]” (Conte Jr., Ronald L., Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.)






“seen for a very long time….” (Dio, Roman History, Volume VIII, Loeb Classical Library.)




Seneca (the original Latin; cf. translation below!:)


[28,3] Fecit hic cometes, qui Paterculo et Vopisco consulibus apparuit, quae ab Aristotele Theophrastoque sunt praedicta; fuerunt enim maximae et continuae tempestates ubique, at in Achaia Macedoniaque urbes terrarum motibus prorutae sunt.” (Quaestiones Naturales, Liber VII DE COMETIS:[28,3])




Gary W. Kronk quoting a translation of Seneca’s Latin text above:


(Cf Macedonian earthquake; next item below!)


“Seneca said, "The comet which appeared in the consulship of Paterculus and Vopiscus did what was predicted by Aristotle and Theophrastus: for there were very violent and continuous storms everywhere, and in Achaia and Macedonia cities were destroyed by earthquake." ” Quaestiones Naturales (63), book 7, pp. 262–3, 270–1, 286–9. Cf. Cometography, Vol. 1, Kronk, Gary W.

Notice: If indeed Seneca’s earthquake in Macedonia is the same as the earthquake referenced in Acts 16:12-40 then the comet here referenced by Seneca is probably the 39 CE comet, isn’t it? But then, as a consequence, “the consulship of Paterculus and Vopiscus” must be placed at the time of this comet, i.e. in 39 CE.

I find no relevant reference, in Finegan’s or any other published lists of Roman consuls, to “Paterculus and Vopiscus.” One “Vopisco” is found however at “AUC 867   AD 114,” but that is much too late. Neither do I find them in Tacitus’ Annales or in other readily available lists of Roman consuls.

Consequently, I’ll venture to place the consulship of Paterculus and Vopiscus” where it seems it should fit the best: At this time in my study this will be after the consulship of D. Iunius Silanus Torquatus and Q. Haterius Antoninus and before the consulship of M. Asinius Marcellus and M. Acilius Aviola. (In doing this it appears as though one problem I see in the Roman consulship is resolved, i.e. having anchor points in 27 CE and 46 CE there seemed to be one consulship missing for the number of years available.)




Conte quoting Kronk quoting Seneca:


“Seneca gives a different description of this comet: “The Claudius comet rose from the north into the zenith and moved east, always growing dimmer.” [Lucius Annaeus Seneca, Natural Questions II, ed. E. H. Warmington, trans. Thomas H. Corcoran, Loeb Classical Library, (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1972), “Comets,” 7.21.3.]  Later, he reiterates that the comet was seen in the north, then rose straight up until it disappeared. [Kronk, Cometography, p. 28.]“ (Conte Jr., Ronald L., Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.)




An earthquake in Macedonia

In the fall of 40 CE



Acts 16:12-40:


12 Macedonia14 And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira … 23 prison… 25 at midnight26 And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bands were loosed.  27 And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled. 28 But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here. 29 Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, 30 And brought them out… 40 And they went out of the prison, and entered into the house of Lydia: and when they had seen the brethren, they comforted them, and departed.





Seneca (the original Latin text:)


[28,3] Fecit hic cometes, qui Paterculo et Vopisco consulibus apparuit, quae ab Aristotele Theophrastoque sunt praedicta; fuerunt enim maximae et continuae tempestates ubique, at in Achaia Macedoniaque urbes terrarum motibus prorutae sunt.” (Quaestiones Naturales, Liber VII DE COMETIS:[28,3])




Gary W. Kronk quoting a translation of Seneca’s Latin text above:


“Seneca said, "The comet which appeared in the consulship of Paterculus and Vopiscus did what was predicted by Aristotle and Theophrastus: for there were very violent and continuous storms everywhere, and in Achaia and Macedonia cities were destroyed by earthquake." ” Quaestiones Naturales (63), book 7, pp. 262–3, 270–1, 286–9. Cf. Cometography, Vol. 1, Kronk, Gary W.



A comet

Beginning in the lunar month between December 17, 46 CE and January 15, 47 CE (as thus far understood) and “visible for 20 days” or else for “six months.”



Gary W. Kronk:

        “46 - The Chronicle of Koguryo contained in the Korean text Samguk Sagi (1145) is the only source of information on this object. It says a "sparkling star" appeared sometime during the month of 46 December 17 and 47 January 15. The object was in the south and remained visible for 20 days. Ho Peng Yoke (1962) noted that ancient Korean records were frequently inaccurate.

“Full moon: December 31

“Sources: Samguk Sagi (1145), p. 149; Ho Peng Yoke (1962), p. 149; I. Hasegawa (1980), p. 66.” (Excerpt from volume 1 of Gary W. Kronk’s Cometography series.)






 “OCT. Let the stormy seas seek cordial companionship with the stars and let fire mingle with water, let the very heavens descend and take the place of grim Tartarus, let balmy light amicably join hands with hideous darkness, and bright clear day ally itself with the dewy night, before my mental tenderness could harmonize with the impious disposition of that wicked husband of mine. I am ever mindful of my murdered brother, I wish that the ruler of the heavenly gods would make ready to cut short with his lightnings, the terrible life of that cruel emperor—that deity, who so often shakes the earth with his frightful thunderbolts and terrifies our very souls with his awful igneous displays and novel wonders (fresh prodigies). But I have witnessed of late a blazing phenomenal splendor in the heavens,6 a comet that has exposed to my view its ominous fiery torch, (tail) just where slow-moving Boötes, stiff as it were with the Arctic cold, drives his wagon at each turn of the night continually; behold, the very atmosphere seems polluted with the horrible breath of that cruel ruler. The angry stars actually seem to be threatening the people with some fresh disasters, whom that impious potentate holds in domination.” (Lucius Annaeus Seneca, Octavia, translated, with notes, by Watson Bradshaw. London: Swan Sonnenschein & Co., Paternoster Square (1902.))

“...uidimus caelo iubar
ardens cometen pandere infaustam facem,
qua plaustra tardus noctis alterna uice
regit Bootes, frigore Arctoo rigens:





Kronk quoting Seneca:


"This last comet ran across half the sky in only six months." Seneca added, "this recent comet started its motion in the north and passing through the west it arrived in the southern region and its orbit passed out of sight as it was rising." (Seneca, Lucius Annaeus, Quaestiones Naturales, (63), book 7, pp. 262–3, 270–1, 286–9 [Quote out of private email from Gary W. Kronk.])


         "We have seen a comet, a blazing radiance in the sky, spread out its hostile torch where slow Boötes guides his wagon in the endless turning of the night." (Seneca, Lucius Annaeus, Octavia, scene II, lines 230–4. [Quoted out of private email from Kronk, Gary W. with an excerpt out of his Cometography, Vol. 1.])



Conte quoting Seneca:


“The poet Seneca describes a comet during the reign of Nero, when Paterculus and Vopiscus were consuls, … This comet began in the north, passed through the west, and ended in the southern sky. [Kronk, Cometography, p. 31.]” Conte Jr., Ronald L., Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.






“XIV:22. A comet meantime blazed in the sky, which in popular opinion always portends revolution to kingdoms. So people began to ask, as if Nero was already dethroned, who was to be elected. In every one's mouth was the name of Rubellius Blandus, who inherited through his mother the high nobility of the Julian family...  ” (Tacitus, The Annals, Book XIV:22)




(Re “a blazing star” and the subsequent conspiracies of Piso [in which Seneca was also implemented and then killed] and of Vinicius:)


“XXXVI. Nor did he proceed with less cruelty against those who were not of his family. A blazing star, which is vulgarly supposed to portend destruction to kings and princes, appeared above the horizon several nights successively 610. He felt great anxiety on account of this phenomenon, and being informed by one Babilus, an astrologer, that princes were used to expiate such omens by the sacrifice of illustrious persons, and so avert the danger foreboded to their own persons, by bringing it on the heads of their chief men, he resolved on the destruction of the principal nobility in Rome. He was the more encouraged to this, because he had some plausible pretence for carrying it into execution, from the discovery of two conspiracies against him; the former and more dangerous of which was that formed by Piso 611, and discovered at Rome; the other was that of Vinicius 612, at Beneventum.”

“610 (return) This comet, as well as one which appeared the year in which Claudius died, is described by Seneca, Natural. Quaest. VII. c. xvii. and xix. and by Pliny, II. c. xxv.”

“611 (return) See Tacitus, Annal. xv. 49-55.

“612 (return) The sixteenth book of Tacitus, which would probably have given an account of the Vinician conspiracy, is lost. It is shortly noticed by Plutarch.”

(The Lives of the Twelve Caesars by C. Suetonius Tranquillus; NERO CLAUDIUS CAESAR:XXXVI, The Translation of Alexander Thomson, M.D.)



Conte quoting Suetonius:


“Suetonius mentions a comet observation before he describes the burning of Rome. [Suetonius, Lives of the Caesars, Loeb Classical Library, 6.36.] But he makes no association between the comet and that great fire, so the comet did not immediately precede the fire, and must have occurred many months, or even a few years, earlier. He also states that Nero consulted an astrologer and was advised to kill members of the aristocracy to atone for the comet. This description of the decision to atone for the comet indicates that this was the first time that Nero atoned for a comet by killing aristocrats. Therefore, this comet was the first comet of Nero’s reign, occurring a few years before the burning of Rome, in the year A.D. 46.” Conte Jr., Ronald L., Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.






Pliny the Elder:


“[Comet] during Nero’s principate shining almost continuously and with a terrible glare. (Pliny, Natural History, 2.23.)


        Another translation provides:

        And in our own age, about the time when Claudius Cæsar was poisoned and left the Empire to Domitius Nero, and afterwards, while the latter was Emperor7 , there was one [comet] which was almost constantly seen and was very frightful. It is thought important to notice towards what part it darts its beams, or from what star it receives its influence, what it resembles, and in what places it shines. If it resembles a flute, it portends something unfavourable respecting music; if it appears in the parts of the signs referred to the secret members, something respecting lewdness of manners; something respecting wit and learning, if they form a triangular or quadrangular figure with the position of some of the fixed stars; and that some one will be poisoned, if they appear in the head of either the northern or the southern serpent.

7 Seneca refers to the four comets that were seen, [1] after the death of Cæsar, [2] in the time of Augustus, [3] of Claudius, and [4] of Nero; Quæst. Nat. i. 7. Suetonius mentions the comet which appeared previous to the death of Claudius, cap. 46, and Tacitus that before the death of Nero, Ann. xiv. 22.”

(Pliny the Elder, Natural History, Book II:23)






Additional spin-off discoveries



Volcanic eruption & earthquake

Vesuvius’ 1st eruption & earthquake destroying Pompeii:


February 5, 48 CE



"48. In the consulship of Publius Marius and Lucius Asinius..." (Tacitus, The Annals, Book XIV:48. Cf. Book XIV:17.)

"22... During the same consulship a gymnasium was wholly consumed by a stroke of lightning, and a statue of Nero within it was melted down to a shapeless mass of bronze. An earthquake too demolished a large part of Pompeii, a populous town in Campania..." (Tacitus, The Annals, Book XV:22.)

"23. During the consulship of Memmius Regulus and Verginius Rufus, Nero welcomed with something more than mortal joy the birth of a daughter by Poppaea, whom he called Augusta, the same title having also been given to Poppaea..." (Tacitus, The Annals, Book XV:23.)





“This earthquake took place upon the Nones of February, in the consulate of Regulus and Virginius, and brought great slaughter and desolation upon Campania, a district that had never been safe from this affliction, but whose previous escape from injury had on each occasion increased its freedom from fear…” (Seneca, Nat. Quaest. vi. 1)



Other references:


“Seneca reports that an earthquake occurred on 5 February 62...” (Web)



 POMPEII… The Eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 63 damaged Pompeii, Naples, and Herculaneum… In the summer of A.D. 79, Vesuvius erupted suddenly and with great violence…

VESUVIUS… The first recorded [But cf. the entry re Pompeii above!] eruption occurred on Aug. 24, A.D. 79” (The World Book Encyclopedia) [Strike throughs added/Ed.]






37 & 38

Two comets

54 CE, Feb/Mar & Jun/Jul:


Conte quoting Kronk:


“These comets were seen sometime between February 27and March 27, and sometime between June 9 and July 9, 54 CE, respectively. The dates ranges provided are from new moon to new moon [probably astronomical vs. China,] with the comet sighting taking place any time within that date range. (Kronk, Cometography, p. 29-30, & footnote #1147”,) (Ronald L. Conte Jr., Important Dates in the Lives of Jesus and Mary.)


- Correction: Actually the June 9 to July 9, 54 CE dates represent full moon to full moon.







“Thus there was a star resembling a sword, which stood over the city, and a comet, that continued for a whole year.” Josephus, The Wars of the Jews, VI:5:3.

[Re the phrase “continued for a whole year” cf. my considerations re a revised meaning for the Greek word “διετία,” which Greek word may or may not lay at the basis for this phrase and which to the best of my understanding means “through the remainder of the civil biblical year,” i.e. until Tishri 22 (or sometimes referencing the entire 7th month, ie. from Tishri 1 through Tishri 22.) Accordingly, it appears as though this last comet was visible through Tishri 22, 54 CE [sunset November 11, 54 CE (sic; cf. Adar III, 54 CE and end of Elul, 54 CE! Cf. also the double eclipse item below!)]]


“the signs that were so evident and did so plainly foretell their future desolation.” Josephus, The Wars of the Jews, VI:5:3.


 “…the Conflagration of the Holy House….the Signs that Preceded this Destruction.” Josephus, The Wars of the Jews, VI:5:heading.


-          The main temple building was set on fire on the Seventh Day of the week Av 12, 55 CE [Saturday July 26, 55 CE.]

-          “AND thus was Jerusalem taken, in the second year of the reign of Vespasian, on the eighth day of the month Gorpeius [Elul,]”which day was the Fifth Day of the week, Elul 8, 55 CE [Thursday August 21, 55 CE.]



Double eclipse: 1. Lunar eclipse, and 2. the moon eclipsing the comet (cf. the above item!)

54 CE, August 7, pre-dawn on Wednesday as seen from the Roman Empire.

There was a total lunar eclipse lasting 1 hour 46 minutes on Wednesday August 7, 54 CE at 04:36 UT, the first visible part of the eclipse beginning at 02:38 UT (i.e. beginning at 04:59 Jerusalem solar time.)

From the language of Dio’s record, which could represent an exact quote from a first hand observer, it appears as though the above referenced comet was in fact (?) eclipsed by the moon on the very same day as the lunar eclipse, possibly (?) even concurrent with the lunar eclipse.


Quoting Dio quoting an unknown source:


Οτι ο Ούίτελλιος… Πράττοντι δ' αυτω ταύτα σημεία πονηρα εγενετο. και γαρ κομήτης αστήρ εφαντάσθη και ή σελήνη παρά το καθεστηκος δίς εκλελοιπεναι έδοξε' και γαρ τεταρταία και εβδομαία εσκιάσθη. και ηλίους δύο άμα, εκ τε των ανατολών και εκ των δυσμών, τούτον μεν ασθενή και ωχρον εκείνον δε λαμπρον και ισχυρόν, εϊδον.(Dio, Roman History, Volume VIII:64:8:1.)



Perhaps the following translation [and interpretation] of mine (albeit with MUCH credit to WordReference forum helpers) would be true to the facts and to the intent of the original Greek text?:

Vitellius… While he was behaving in this way, evil omens occurred. For both (και γαρ) a comet star (κομητης αστηρ) visible (εφαντασθη) [at that time] and (και) the moon (η σεληνη,) in an uncommon and impressive display (παρα το καθεστηκον) [with the moon resting initially just beneath the comet] were observed to be involved in (εδοξε) a two-fold (δις) eclipse (εκλελοιπεναι.) For both (και γαρ) were obscured on [the fourth watch of] the Fourth Day [of the week] (τεταρταια) and (και) the Seventh day [of the month (εβδομαια) while the moon was obscured from below] by a shadow laid upon it (εσκιασθη) [by the eclipsing earth hiding the moon while the moon was at the same time eclipsing the comet from underneath.] And (και) [this happened] while (αμα) they saw (ειδον) simultaneously (αμα) two (δυο) great luminaries (ηλιους,) one in the east (εκ τε των ανατολων) and one in the west (και εκ των δυσμων,) the latter (τουτον μεν) weak and pale (ασθενη και ωχρον) [the moon setting over the western horizon,] the former (εκεινον δε) brilliant and powerful (λαμπρον και ισχυρον) [the sun rising in the east.]”


A classical translation which may be a little misleading:

“Vitellius… While he was behaving in this way, evil omens occurred. A comet was seen, and the moon, contrary to precedent, appeared to suffer two eclipses, being obscured on the fourth and on the seventh day. Also people saw two suns at once, one in the west weak and pale, and one in the east brilliant and powerful.(Dio, Roman History, Volume VIII:64:8:1.)




A comet - The length of the observation was fairly long, 113 days.

55/56 CE, Dec. of A.D. 55 to March of A.D. 56.


41 & 42

A pairing of a solar and a lunar eclipse within 15 days

Lunar eclipse on May 26, 58 CE.

Solar eclipse on May 11, 58 CE: Total solar eclipse visible from Siberia to North Pole

- the penumbra covered eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea in the Roman Empire at local sunrise.


(Is there a better fit?)


Pliny: “For the eclipse of both sun and moon within 15 days of each other has occurred even in our time, in the year of the third consulship of the elder Emperor Vespasian and the second consulship of the younger.” Pliny, Natural History, 2.10.


Photo - View from the moon, Close up photo from the moon, Photo - View from Jerusalem, Photo - Close up view from Jerusalem, Photo - Close up view from Jerusalem less daylight, Movie - View from the moon, and Close up movie from the moon                                                   



A solar eclipse

Apr 30, 59 CE

Pliny the Elder:


"The eclipse of the sun which occurred the day before the calends of May, in the consulship of Vipstanus and Fonteius3, not many years ago, was seen in Campania between the seventh and eighth hour of the day; the general Corbulo informs us, that it was seen in Armenia, between the tenth and eleventh hour;"


Translator’s footnote #3: "It took place on the 30th of April, in the year of the City 811, A.D. 59;"


 (Pliny the Elder, The Natural History (As modified [cf. below] from the original translation by: eds. John Bostock, M.D., F.R.S., H.T. Riley, Esq., B.A.,) CHAP. 72. [Latin version 2.75] --IN WHAT PLACES ECLIPSES ARE INVISIBLE, AND WHY THIS IS THE CASE.)


Error notice:

The original [mis-]translation reads: "…seen in Armenia, between the eleventh and twelfth hour;"


An analysis and careful consideration of this record of Pliny the Elder indicates that the commonly available lists of Roman consulships are in need of considerable revision, at the very minimum re the relative placement of “the consulship of Vipstanus and Fonteius” vs. the concurrent Roman Emperors! As best I can tell, Pliny the Elder is giving reference to an eclipse, then recent, occurring when Vespasian was the Emperor of Rome. Notice, in the quote above, Pliny the Elder’s own words, “not many years ago!” Pliny’s book is dedicated to Emperor Titus Vespasian, the son and successor of Emperor Vespasian! The point Pliny is attempting to emphasize to the reader is that the earth is a globe. That being the case, why should he give reference to a solar eclipse that occurred during the reign of Caesar Nero, who died a minimum of 14 years before the dedication of Pliny the Elder’s book The Natural History?







A comet

60 CE, in August

Pliny mentions a comet associated with Titus, but seen before he became emperor. “ ‘Javelin-stars’ quiver like a dart; these are a very terrible portent. To this class belongs the comet about which Titus Imperator Caesar in his 5th consulship wrote an account in his famous poem, that being its latest appearance down to the present day.” Pliny, Natural History, 2.22.


A comet

65/66 CE - Jan.-April of A.D. 66 & July-Sept.  A.D. 65

Dio tells us about Vespasian: “To those who said anything to him about the comet he said: ‘This is an omen, not for me, but for the Parthian king; for he has long hair, whereas I am bald.’ ” Dio, Roman History, Volume VIII, Loeb Classical Library, 66.17.3.


Dio adds that the comet “was visible for a long time.” Dio, Roman History, Volume VIII, Loeb Classical Library, 66.17.2.






Volcanic eruption

Vesuvius’ 2nd eruption: August 24, 66 CE


Pliny the Younger:


On the 24th of August, about one in the afternoon, my mother desired him [Pliny the Elder] to observe a cloud which appeared of a very unusual size and shape. He had just taken a turn in the sun and, after bathing himself in cold water, and making a light luncheon, gone back to his books: he immediately arose and went out upon a rising ground from whence he might get a better sight of this very uncommon appearance. A cloud, from which mountain was uncertain, at this distance (but it was found afterwards to come from Mount Vesuvius), was ascending, the appearance of which I cannot give you a more exact description of than by likening it to that of a pine tree, for it shot up to a great height in the form of a very tall trunk, which spread itself out at the top into a sort of branches; occasioned, I imagine, either by a sudden gust of air that impelled it, the force of which decreased as it advanced upwards, or the cloud itself being pressed back again by its own weight, expanded in the manner I have mentioned; it appeared sometimes bright and sometimes dark and spotted, according as it was either more or less impregnated with earth and cinders.(The first letter (6:16:26) re Mt Vesuvius’ eruption written by Pliny the Younger to Cornelius Tacitus, the historian.)


THE LETTER which, in compliance with your request, I wrote to you concerning the death of my uncle [Pliny the Elder] has raised, it seems, your curiosity to know what terrors and dangers attended me while I continued at Misenum; for there, I think, my account broke off:

                   “Though my shock’d soul recoils, my tongue shall tell.”

My uncle having left us, I spent such time as was left on my studies (it was on their account indeed that I had stopped behind [Pliny the Younger “stopped behind” when his uncle, Pliny the Elder, sailed towards the erupting mountain/ed. comment]), till it was time for my bath. After which I went to supper, and then fell into a short and uneasy sleep. There had been noticed for many days before a trembling of the earth, which did not alarm us much, as this is quite an ordinary occurrence in Campania; but it was so particularly violent that night that it not only shook but actually overturned, as it would seem, everything about us. My mother rushed into my chamber, where she found me rising, in order to awaken her. We sat down in the open court of the house, which occupied a small space between the buildings and the sea. I was at that time but eighteen years of age…” (The second letter re Mt Vesuvius’ eruption written by Pliny the Younger to Cornelius Tacitus, the historian)





There happened in his [Titus’] reign some dreadful accidents; an eruption of Mount Vesuvius, in Campania, and a fire in Rome, which continued during three days and three nights; besides a plague, such as was scarcely ever known before.” (Suetonius, The Lives of the Twelve Caesars, TITUS:VIII)






“2. But for the marriage of Drusilla with Azizus, it was in no long time afterward dissolved upon the following occasion: While Felix was procurator of Judea, he saw this Drusilla, and fell in love with her; for she did indeed exceed all other women in beauty; and he sent to her a person whose name was Simon one of his friends; a Jew he was, and by birth a Cypriot, and one who pretended to be a magician, and endeavored to persuade her to forsake her present husband, and marry him; and promised, that if she would not refuse him, he would make her a happy woman. Accordingly she acted ill, and because she was desirous to avoid her sister Bernice's envy, for she was very ill treated by her on account of her beauty, was prevailed upon to transgress the laws of her forefathers, and to marry Felix; and when he had had a son by her, he named him Agrippa. But after what manner that young man, with his wife, perished at the conflagration of the mountain Vesuvius, in the days of Titus Caesar” Josephus, Antiquities, XX:7:2



Other references:


Titus’ reign: June 23, 66 CE - September 13, 68 CE. (Per the within Tree of Life Chronology© discoveries.) 


“…just two months after Titus took over from his father, the eruptions of Vesuvius began… (unrv.com)


“The eruption of Mount Vesuvius occurred in the first year of the reign of Titus, only a couple of months after the death of Vespasian. Pliny the Elder died as a result of that disaster… August 23-24, 66 A.D..” (Ronald L. Conte Jr.)


“[Pliny the Elder] perished, in the fifty-sixth year of his age.” ("THE ELDER PLINY." LoveToKnow 1911 Online Encyclopedia. © 2003, 2004 LoveToKnow.)


POMPEII… The Eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 63 damaged Pompeii, Naples, and Herculaneum… In the summer of A.D. 79, Vesuvius erupted suddenly and with great violence…

VESUVIUS… The first recorded [But cf. the entry re Pompeii above!] eruption occurred on Aug. 24, A.D. 79” (The World Book Encyclopedia) [Strike throughs added/Ed.]



Constellation between the moon, Aquarius, and a given date in the Julian calendar: “The 5th hour” of “the fourteenth day before the Kalends of October.”

Between 10:00-12:00 o’clock on September 18, 77 CE.


Suetonius re Caesar Domitian:



14  1 … He had long since had a premonition of the last year and day of his life, and even of the very hour and manner of his death. In his youth astrologers had predicted all this to him…

“16. 1 The day before he was killed he… declared that on the following day the moon would be stained with blood in Aquarius,e and that a deed would be done of which men would talk all over the world…  2... Then he asked the time, and by pre-arrangement the sixth hour was announced to him, instead of the fifth, which he feared. Filled with joy at this, and believing all danger now past, he was hastening to the bath, when his chamberlain Parthenius changed his purpose by announcing that someone had called about a matter of great moment and would not be put off. Then he dismissed all his attendants and went to his bedroom, where he was slain.

“17:3 He was slain on the fourteenth day before the Kalends of October in the forty-fifth year of his age and the fifteenth of his reign…


Footnote: “e Domitian was murdered the following day, September 18, A.D. 96, at the fifth hour…”


(C. Suetonius Tranquillus, The Lives of the Twelve Caesars, The Life of Domitian. Cf. also the original Latin text.)



Reviewing the Swiss ephemeris charts from 60 CE through 96 CE I find only four years in which the moon was in Aquarius on September 18 of the Julian calendar. Those years are 66 CE, 77 CE, 85 CE, and 96 CE. Thursday September 18, 77 CE finds the moon in Aquarius the full 24 hours. (96 CE is the conventional history placement of this same event.)


Naturally, using astronomy software such as the Starry Night Backyard software easily confirms the very same constellations.



A total solar eclipse

On February 19, 174 CE, at 06:57 AM a 2 min 12 second total solar eclipse traveled across southern Italy

Was this Pertinax’s total solar eclipse??


Quoting from Historia Augusta, The Life of Pertinax:

14… 3, And on the day before he [Pertinax] died [“V kal. Apr.”] stars of great brilliancy were seen near the sun in the day-time…

(Historia Augusta, The Life of Pertinax)


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


A total solar eclipse

On August 14, 212 CE, at the beginning of the 2nd hour of the day [06:05 AM local solar time] this eclipse was visible as a 0.963 partial solar eclipse from the Rome horizon.

Was this Gordian III’s total solar eclipse??


Quoting from Historia Augusta, The Three Gordians:

23… (Dexippus says that p423Gordian the third was the child of Gordian's son). But shortly afterwards, when it was understood among the veterans that Gordian was ruling alone, a peace was confirmed between the populace and the soldiers and veterans, and an end of the civil strife was made when the boy was given the consulship.[15] 2 There was an omen, however, that Gordian was not to rule for long, which was this: there occurred an eclipse of the sun,[16] so black that men thought it was night and business could not be transacted without the aid of lanterns.


(Historia Augusta, The Three Gordians 23.2)


For details of this identification, please follow this link!

For as brief and to the point analysis of the fundamental error behind conventional dating, please follow this link!


“A comet…” followed in the subsequent year by “Constant eclipses of the moon… night after night…”


That is, an exceptionally large comet and, most likely, extensive volcanic activity in a year when there were also 3 lunar eclipses visible from Rome.

A comet was seen from about March 19 through mid April, 400 CE.


3 total lunar eclipses were visible from Rome:

1)   Dec 17, 400 CE,

2)   June 12, 401 CE, and

3)   Dec 6, 401 CE.


Notice: The most reliable correlation between the historical record of Claudian and the astronomical reality is here provided by the Chinese and Korean astronomical observations of comets as recorded also in Kronk’s Cometography, which is here relating an exceptionally large comet, that seems to fit well the description provided by Claudian. (Unfortunately this particular comet in not part of the info available on my Starry Night Backyard.[17])

It should be noted also that Claudian’s record is not giving any particulars whatsoever to any common lunar eclipse! Rather, it appears as though Claudian’s record is providing for us the evidence of a great deal of volcanic action within the year subsequent to the year when this extraordinary comet was seen. Cf. Bill Thayer’s footnote!

Please notice also that Bury’s words “three” and “huge” do not find any direct correlation in Claudian’s record! I do not find any reference of his in support of these words of his. Nevertheless, it appears that those words do indeed describe the real events accurately.



Quoting History of the Later Roman Empire, by J. B. Bury:


The approaching disruption of the Empire was indeed hidden from Claudian and all others at the end of the fourth century. The Empire still reached from the Euphrates to the Clyde. Theodosius, who ruled a larger realm than Augustus, had steered it safely through dangers apparently greater than any which now menaced, and Stilicho was the military successor of Theodosius. The sway of Rome, if the Roman only looked at the external situation, might seem the assured and permanent order of the world:

nec terminus umquam

Romanae dicionis erit.

Yet there was a very uneasy feeling in these years that the end of Rome might really be at hand. It was due to superstition. The twelve vultures that appeared to Romulus had in ages past been interpreted to mean that the life of Rome would endure for twelve centuries, and for some reason it was thought that this period was now drawing to a close:

tunc reputant annos interceptoque volatu

vulturis incidunt properatis saecula metis.91

The ancient auspice seemed to be confirmed by exceptional natural phenomena — the appearance of a huge comet in the spring of A.D. 40092 and three successive eclipses of the moon.a Before these signs appeared, Honorius and Stilicho had allowed the altar of Victory which had been removed from the Senate-house by Theodosius to be brought back, a momentary concession to the fears of the Roman pagans. And it is very probably due to superstitious fears that the work of restoring the walls of Rome was now taken in hand.93


a ) The occurrence of two eclipses in a European year is so frequent as not to elicit mention; but three, while a perfectly normal event, is a rare one, recurring every few hundred years. For details, see NASA's page (by Fred Espenak) on the Saros cycle. For an example of modern superstition along these lines, however, see What Do Muslims Believe In? where the apparently erroneous statement that three eclipses are not possible in a year is in fact correct, since by year is meant the Moslem lunar year, in which, essentially by definition, the third eclipse of any possible tight series of three will be in the following year, on the (lunar) anniversary of the first.


92 ) Claudian, ib. 243 sqq. The comet is also referred to by eastern writers (e.g. Socrates, VI.6), and its appearance is recorded in Chinese annals. In the same passage, 233 sqq., are mentioned the eclipses which occurred in Dec. 17, 400, June 12 and Dec. 6, 401.


(J. B. Bury, History of the Later Roman Empire, Capter V, p. 136-137)



Quoting Claudian:


Constant eclipses of the moon alarmed us and night after nightb throughout the cities of Italy sounded wailings and the beating of brazen gongs to scare the shadow from off her darkened face. Men would not believe that the moon had been defrauded of her brother the sun, forbidden to give light by the interposition of the earth; they thought that Thessalian witches, accompanying the barbarian armies, were darkening her rays with their country's magic spells. Then with these new portents their troubled minds link the signs of the past year and any omens that perchance peaceful days had neglected — showers of stones, bees swarming in strange places, furious fires destroying houses from no known cause, a comet — ne'er seen in heaven without disaster — which first rose where Phoebus[18] lifts his rosy morning beam and old Cepheus shines together with starry Cassiopeia, his spouse; then it withdrew little by little to the constellation of Lycaon's daughterVII,[19] and with its errant tail dimmed the stars of the Getic Wain[20] until at last its dying fires grew feeble and vanished.c


b ) Constant eclipses of the moon night after night: The translation is accurate, but it is also clear that Claudian knew too much about eclipses to imagine that they could occur on successive nights, whether many or even two; as he points out a bit further on, it's not believable. At the same time he gives the impression that the light of the moon really was obscured several nights running, or even for some longer period. Since all but the very darkest lunar eclipses in fact leave the moon visible but darkened and reddened, one is tempted to see in this passage the description of atmospheric disturbances due to a volcanic eruption that would have done the same thing: if powerful enough, such an eruption could have been anywhere on earth, and no Roman need have known of the eruption itself.

VII ) i.e. The Great Bear.

c ) a comet appearing in Cepheus and vanishing in Ursa Major: To the naked-eye observer, comets tend to pop out full blown, the gradual build-up not being noticeable at first; they disappear as described, because we're watching them. Prima facie, this particular track is possible, since unlike meteors, comets need not travel in the plane of the solar system; I leave it to the astronomer to investigate further into the specifics.


(Claudian, The Gothic War, p. 144-145.)






Quoting Kronk, Cometography:


Discovered: 400 March 18.0 (Δ=0.30 AU, r=0.73 AU, Elong.=23°)

Last seen: 400 April

Closest to the Earth: 400 March 31 (0.0733 AU)

Calculated path: AND (Disc), CAS (Mar. 26), CEP (Mar. 28), UMi-CAM (Mar. 30), UMi-DRA-UMa (Mar.31), CVn (Apr. 1), COM (Apr. 3), VIR (Apr. 5)

The astronomical chapters of the Chinese text Chin shu (635) date the appearance of this “sparkling star” as 400 March 19. The object measured about 30° long and “appeared at Khuei [β, δ, ε, ζ, η, ν, and π Andromedae, and σ, τ, υ, φ, χ, ψ, and 65 Piscium].” The text adds, “Its upper portion reached Ko-Tao [ε, θ, ι, φ, and χ Cassiopeiae] and the western wall of the Tzu-Wei Enclosure [Draco, Ursa Minor, Cepheus, and Camelopardalis].” The date and location indicate a morning observation, implying a UT of March 18.9.

Although not as detailed, the Korean text Chronicle of Paekche, a part of the Samguk Sagi (1145), notes a “sparkling star” was discovered in spring, sometime during the month of March 12 to April 9. The object was seen among Khuei and Lou [α, β, and γ Arietis].

The Chin shu continues by noting the comet “entered the box of Pei-Tou [the Big Dipper] and went as far as San-Thai [ι, κ, λ, μ, ν, and ξ Ursae Majoris].” Although the orbit below indicates the comet was very close to Pei-Tou on March 31, it did not enter the “box”.

Finally, the Chin shu states that during the month of April 10 to May 9 “it passed Wu-Ti [β, 85, 95, SAO 99812, and SAO 99827 Leonis] and Tuan-Mên [space between βand γ Virginis].” The orbit indicates the comet would have passed Wu-Ti at the beginning of the lunar month [April 10], while it would have passed Tuan-Mên around April 13.

The Chinese text Wéi shu (572) gives essentially the same information as the Chin shu, but notes the comet was first seen in the third month instead of the second.

Several European accounts are available which describe a great comet seen in 400. The Roman historian Philostorgius wrote Ecclesiasticae Historiae (425) and said a “sword-shaped star” predicted a disaster. The Byzantine church historian Socrates Scholasticus wrote Ecclesiastical history (450) and said a “very large comet [was seen] stretching from the sky to the ground, such as no-one had seen. . . .” The Roman lawyer and historian Hermias Sozomen wrote Ecclesiastical History around 443. At one point he is discussing the attack of Constantinople by Gainas in 400 and says, “His enterprise was pre-announced by the appearance of a comet directly over the city: this comet was of extraordinary magnitude, larger, indeed, than any that had previously been seen.”

Hasegawa (1979) computed the parabolic orbit below. The orbit indicates the comet was within 20° of the sun from near the end of 399 December until March 15, and reached a minimum solar elongation of 6° on February 17. The comet then reached its most northerly declination of +89° (apparent) on March 30, and a maximum solar elongation of 142° on April 10.







400 Feb. 25 (UT)








FULL MOON: March 26, April 24

SOURCES: Ecclesiasticae Historiae (425), book 11, ch. 7; Ecclesiastical History (443), book 8, ch. 4; Ecclesiastical History (450), book 8, ch. 4; Wéi shu (572), p. 161; Chin shu (6350, p. 243; Samguk Sagi (1145), p. 161; A. G. Pingré (1783), pp. 306-7, 598; J. Williams (1871), p. 30; Ho Peng Yoke (1962), p. 161; A. A. Barrett (1978), pp. 105-6; I. Hasegawa (1979), pp. 260-1.





Halley’s Comet being eclipsed by the Moon


(Cf. also the Halley’s Comet event of Nov 13, 1833 CE!)

At dawn on September 25, 1453 CE, at 5 AM, the waning Moon (21.3 days old,) eclipsed the widest portion of Halley’s comet. This event was observed and recorded in Constantinople, Turkey, as an event at the beginning of the Byzantine year 6962 (which Byzantine years begin with September 1 of the Julian calendar years.)


Quoting Georgii Phranzae:


“In the beginning[21] of the [Byzantine] year 6962 [beginning September 1, 1453 CE][22] a comet looking like a sword[23] became visible in that portion of the sky which is located between the first light of dawn and the darker portions towards the western horizon[24]; and, when the full moon was past, it so happened that it [the comet] became eclipsed by the moon[25] according to the order and orbit of the heavenly stars, as is the custom. Some, seeing the sword-shaped[26] comet, and its [appearance of] moving from the west and [of] making its way to the east [i.e. by means of the head of the comet pointing in that direction] and having pursued an encounter with, and [having successfully] come into an intimate [apparent] connection with the moon,[27] and having seen the gloom[28] of the eclipse[29] [that is, the brightness of the moon paling in comparison to the brightness of the embracing comet,] were considering that the sword-shaped comet and the darkening[30] of the moon thus indicate that the Christians, perpetrators from the west, have come against the Turks, and will conquer them. The Turks were observing and they fell into not a little fear and reflections. But also those nights, being a full moon, flashes of lightning and thunders left no interval throughout each evening until even the second watch of the night [~9PM-midnight.] Moreover, early in the morning of day 18 [of September, 1453 CE; a Tuesday] there were some light earthquakes.[31] And there was not a little burning heat in those days.”


(Phrantzae, Georgii, Annales, p. 378-379)


Description: cid:image020.jpg@01CC535E.D4DA2880

Notice: Although I wasn’t sure before, thanks to Bernard Taylor’s generous help with translations, I believe I can now confidently say that Georgii Phranzae’s original Greek text is powerful confirmation for the accuracy of the above Starry Night Backyard simulation of this event. More…

More pictures of the Halley’s Comet vs. Moon encounter…


On the value and importance of cleaning out the cubbard, that is, our traditional schools of thought:

Notice: This eclipse event has been seriously misunderstood and erroneously timed to either 1450 or 1454 due to the poor understanding, among even the best of translators generally, that is, re the frequently very different concepts of timing between different calendars used by different people at various times. For instance, re this event, originally recorded in Greek, then translated into Latin,[32] the commonly accepted scientific language at the time, and then, as a third step, into German or English… Excellent translations of said German tertiary translation/interpretation (i.e. the Moon Comet by J. W. Schmitz) into English and into Swedish are now also available…


Thanks to the generous courtesy of my teacher Bernard Taylor, Ph.D., M.Phil. at Loma Linda University I am happy to be able to provide at this time also an English translation based upon Georgii Phrantzae’s original Greek text as well as a translation of the Latin translation of said original.


Based upon Bernard Taylor’s translation of the Greek original text of Georgii Phrantzae, based upon my Starry Night Backyard astronomy software, based upon Fred Espenak’s Phases of the Moon Tables, and more I am presenting above what I believe is a translation that is even more true to Georgii Phrantzae’s intent and to the event, as it really happened, than is any of the translations, above linked.

More…: An outline of how the “science” of this event went wrong…


Meteorite shower

November 7, 1492 CE

“And this despite many occasions when stones fell before the eyes of a crowd, as did the aerolite in the presence of Emperor Maximilian and his court in Ensisheim, Alsace, on November 7, 1492. (C. P. Olivier, Meteors (1925), p. 4.” (Velikovsky, Immanuel, Worlds in Collision, p. 41.)


Darkness covering New England from 9 AM to midnight, and then, at 1:30 AM making the rising full moon red, that is, an event lasting for 16+ hours.


Considering the relatively limited extent of this darkness (200 mile diameter,) a local event may seem most likely, e.g. a forest fire in present Canada, but then it would seem that such an event would eventually have become known, and the smell of smoke ought to have been mentioned…


I have not found a completely satisfactory astronomical explanation for this event thus far… However, I cannot rule out the possibility that it was caused by a dust cloud composed largely of carbon and coal like substances trailing Halley’s Comet. More…


Also, there was a partial lunar eclipse (U. Mag.: 0.9620) 35-40 hours prior to (!) this darkness, which, however, could not possibly have been the cause for this darkness.


The lunar events from the Boston, MA, horizon: Moon rise: May 17, 1780 CE at 06:25:25 PM (EST); penumbral shadow: May 18, 1780 CE at 03:17 AM (EST); moonset: 04:18:07 (EST) with 90% penumbral eclipse...

May 19, 1780 CE

“The great dark day:” An event greatly emphasized by Seventh-day Adventists as fulfillment of prophecy. Cf. Matthew 24:29; Joel 2:31; and Acts 2:20. Indeed, there might very well be a connection between the cause for this event and the very similar event associated with the 9th plague in Egypt. Cf. Exodus 10:21-22!



Quote from SDA Bible Commentary, Vol. 5, p. 502:

Matthew 24:29

“The Sun. The darkening of the sun here foretold took place on May 19, 1780, known since then as the great dark day. This was the first of the signs in the heavens ordained to herald the imminence of our Lord’s return.

The Moon. On the night of May 19, 1780, the light of the moon was veiled, even as the light of the sun had been during the preceding daytime hours.”


Quote from The Great Controversy by Ellen Gould White, pp. 306-308:

   Twenty-five years later appeared the next sign mentioned in the prophecy—the darkening of the sun and moon. What rendered this more striking was the fact that the time of its fulfillment had been definitely pointed out. In the Saviour’s conversation with His disciples upon Olivet, after describing the long period of trial for the church,—the 1260 years of papal persecution, concerning which He had promised that the tribulation should be shortened,—He thus mentioned certain events to precede His coming, and fixed the time when the first of these should be witnessed: “In those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light.” Mark 13:24. The 1260 days, or years, terminated in 1798. A quarter of a century earlier, persecution had almost wholly ceased. Following this persecution, according to the words of Christ, the sun was to be darkened. On the 19th of May, 1780, this prophecy was fulfilled. {GC 306.1}

   “Almost, if not altogether alone, as the most mysterious and as yet unexplained phenomenon of its kind, ... stands the dark day of May 19, 1780,—a most unaccountable darkening of the whole visible heavens and atmosphere in New England.”—R. M. Devens, Our First Century, page 89. {GC 306.2}

   An eyewitness living in Massachusetts describes the event as follows: “In the morning the sun rose clear, but was soon overcast. The clouds became lowery, and from them, black and ominous, as they soon appeared, lightning flashed, thunder rolled, and a little rain fell. Toward nine o’clock, the clouds became thinner, and assumed a brassy or coppery appearance, and earth, rocks, trees, buildings, water, and persons were changed by this strange, unearthly light. A few minutes later, a heavy black cloud spread over the entire sky except a narrow rim at the horizon, and it was as dark as it usually is at nine o’clock on a summer evening.... {GC 306.3}

   “Fear, anxiety, and awe gradually filled the minds of the people. Women stood at the door, looking out upon the dark landscape; men returned from their labor in the fields; the carpenter left his tools, the blacksmith his forge, the tradesman his counter. Schools were dismissed, and tremblingly the children fled homeward. Travelers put up at the nearest farmhouse. ‘What is coming?’ queried every lip and heart. It seemed as if a hurricane was about to dash across the land, or as if it was the day of the consummation of all things. {GC 306.4}

   “Candles were used; and hearth fires shone as brightly as on a moonless evening in autumn.... Fowls retired to their roosts and went to sleep, cattle gathered at the pasture bars and lowed, frogs peeped, birds sang their evening songs, and bats flew about. But the human knew that night had not come.... {GC 307.1}

   “Dr. Nathanael Whittaker, pastor of the Tabernacle church in Salem, held religious services in the meeting-house, and preached a sermon in which he maintained that the darkness was supernatural. Congregations came together in many other places. The texts for the extemporaneous sermons were invariably those that seemed to indicate that the darkness was consonant with Scriptural prophecy.... The darkness was most dense shortly after eleven o’clock.”—The Essex Antiquarian, April, 1899, vol. 3, No. 4, pp. 53, 54. “In most parts of the country it was so great in the daytime, that the people could not tell the hour by either watch or clock, nor dine, nor manage their domestic business, without the light of candles.... {GC 307.2}

   The extent of this darkness was extraordinary. It was observed as far east as Falmouth. To the westward it reached to the farthest part of Connecticut, and to Albany. To the southward, it was observed along the seacoasts; and to the north as far as the American settlements extend.”—William Gordon, History of the Rise, Progress, and Establishment of the Independence of the U.S.A., vol. 3, p. 57. {GC 307.3}

   The intense darkness of the day was succeeded, an hour or two before evening, by a partially clear sky, and the sun appeared, though it was still obscured by the black, heavy mist. “After sundown, the clouds came again overhead, and it grew dark very fast.” “Nor was the darkness of the night less uncommon and terrifying than that of the day; notwithstanding there was almost a full moon, no object was discernible but by the help of some artificial light, which, when seen from the neighboring houses and other places at a distance, appeared through a kind of Egyptian darkness which seemed almost impervious to the rays.”—Isaiah Thomas, Massachusetts Spy; or, American Oracle of Liberty, vol. 10, No. 472 (May 25, 1780). Said an eyewitness of the scene: “I could not help conceiving at the time, that if every luminous body in the universe had been shrouded in impenetrable shades, or struck out of existence, the darkness could not have been more complete.”—Letter by Dr. Samuel Tenney, of Exeter, New Hampshire, December, 1785 (in Massachusetts Historical Society Collections,1792, 1st series, vol. 1, p. 97). Though at nine o’clock that night the moon rose to the full, “it had not the least effect to dispel the deathlike shadows.” After midnight the darkness disappeared, and the moon, when first visible, had the appearance of blood. {GC 307.4}

   May 19, 1780, stands in history as “The Dark Day.” Since the time of Moses no period of darkness of equal density, extent, and duration, has ever been recorded. The description of this event, as given by eyewitnesses, is but an echo of the words of the Lord, recorded by the prophet Joel, twenty-five hundred years previous to their fulfillment: “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord come.” Joel 2:31.{GC 308.1}


(SNB May 19, 1780 CE Boston, Mass., horizon sunset: 19:02:42; moonrise:  May 20, 1780 at 01:21:24.)


 [This item was first added at the beginning of Day Five 5923[(*??*)] 05 15 2027 [Wednesday evening 2011-09-14.]]


Meteorite shower

July 24, 1790


“The fall of meteorites on July 24, 1790 in southwest France was pronounced “un phénomène physiquement impossible.” (P. Bertholon, Pubblicazióni della specola astronomica Vaticana (1913).” (Velikovsky, Immanuel, Worlds in Collision, p. 41.)


Meteorite shower

April 26, 1803

“…until the year 1803 when, on April 26, a shower of meteorites fell at l’Aigle in France and was investigated bh Biot fro the Frenc Academy of Sciences…” (Velikovsky, Immanuel, Worlds in Collision, p. 41.)


Halley’s comet passing a point where it was almost in line with the Sun, the Moon, the Earth, and with Jupiter, at a distance of 0.675172 au from the Earth, that is, the “great star shower” occurred at a time when the tail of Halley’s Comet was pointing away, not only from the head of the comet, but also away from the Earth!




(Cf. also the Halley’s Comet event of Sep 25, 1453 CE!; as well as also the item below re another great meteor shower in 1886.)

November 13, 1833 CE, from 2 AM until well after sunrise.

“The great star shower of November 13, 1833: An event greatly emphasized by Seventh-day Adventists as fulfillment of prophecy. Cf. Matthew 24:29; Joel 2:31; and Acts 2:20.

Notice: Although the time when Halley’s Comet was located, per Starry Night Backyard 3.1.2, at its nearest point to the Earth on November 24, 1833 (0.573518 au,) and at the point most close to being exactly aligned with the Sun and the Earth on November 16, 1833 CE at 07:00 UT (0.639471 au,) the great star shower was only reported as having taken place on November 13, 1833 CE, which, however, is close to the time when the Sun, the Moon, the Earth, and Halley’s Comet, were all closest to being aligned, which occurred on November 12, 1833 CE at 17:00 UT (All per my Starry Night Backyard 3.1.2 astronomy software.)



Quote from Gary Kronk:

The night of November 12-13, 1833, not only marks the discovery of the Leonid meteor shower, but it marks the actual birth of meteor astronomy.

(Kronk, Gary, Meteor Showers Online, Observing the Leonids)




Quote from SDA Bible Commentary, Vol. 5, p. 502:

Matt 24:29 – The Stars. This sign was fulfilled on Nov. 13, 1833, when there occurred what is undoubtedly the greatest star shower in all history…”




Quote from a Biography re Ellen Gould White, p. 19:


   Just two weeks before Ellen’s sixth birthday the local Portland Advertiser reported: {1BIO 19.2}

   We are told by the early risers ... that the sky yesterday morning [Nov.13], before sunrise, was full of meteors and luminous traces, shooting athwart the heavens in all directions. The sky, some say, seemed to be on fire—others add that the stars appeared to be falling.—November 15,1833. {1BIO 19.3}

   But in nearby Gorham little Ellen slept soundly through the night when the stars fell. She knew nothing yet of William Miller and his message, and in November, 1833, she was probably just starting to attend school. It is logical to assume that like any healthy youngster she must have used the carefree moments of her childhood to learn more about the things around her. {1BIO 19.5}


Quote from The Great Controversy 1888 ed. by Ellen Gould White, pp. 332-334:

   In 1833, two years after Miller began to present in public the evidences of Christ’s soon coming, the last of the signs appeared which were promised by the Saviour as tokens of his second advent. Said Jesus, “The stars shall fall from heaven.” [Matthew 24:29.] And John in the Revelation declared, as he beheld in vision the scenes that herald the day of God: “The stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig-tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.” [13">Revelation 6:13.] This prophecy received a striking and impressive fulfillment in the great meteoric shower of November 13, 1833. That was the most extensive and wonderful display of falling stars which has ever been recorded; “the whole firmament, over all the United States, being then, for hours, in fiery commotion. No celestial phenomenon has ever occurred in this country, since its first settlement, which was viewed with such intense admiration by one class in the community, or such dread and alarm by another.” “Its sublimity and awful beauty still linger in many minds.... Never did rain fall much thicker than the meteors fell toward the earth; east, west, north, and south, it was the same. In a word, the whole heavens seemed in motion.... The display, as described in Professor Silliman’s journal, was seen all over North America.... From two o’clock until broad daylight, the sky being perfectly serene and cloudless, an incessant play of dazzlingly brilliant luminosities was kept up in the whole heavens.” {GC88 332.4}

   “No language indeed can come up to the splendor of that magnificent display; no one who did not witness it can form an adequate conception of its glory. It seemed as if the whole starry heavens had congregated at one point near the zenith, and were simultaneously shooting forth, with the velocity of lightning, to every part of the horizon; and yet they were not exhausted—thousands swiftly followed in the track of thousands, as if created for the occasion.” “A more correct picture of a fig-tree casting its figs when blown by a mighty wind, it is not possible to behold.” {GC88 333.1}

   On the day following its appearance, Henry Dana Ward wrote thus of the wonderful phenomenon: “No philosopher or scholar has told or recorded an event, I suppose, like that of yesterday morning. A prophet eighteen hundred years ago foretold it exactly, if we will be at the trouble of understanding stars falling to mean falling stars, in the only sense in which it is possible to be literally true.” {GC88 334.1}


Quote from The Great Controversy by Ellen Gould White, p. 334:

   In the New York Journal of Commerce of November 14, 1833, appeared a long article regarding this wonderful phenomenon, containing this statement: “No philosopher or scholar has told or recorded an event, I suppose, like that of yesterday morning. A prophet eighteen hundred years ago foretold it exactly, if we will be at the trouble of understanding stars falling to mean falling stars, ... in the only sense in which it is possible to be literally true.” {GC 334.1}


[This item was first added at the beginning of Day Five 5923[(*??*)] 05 15 2027 [Wednesday evening 2011-09-14.]]


Yet another meteor shower…  or, are there more things of importance to learn?...


November 4 , 1886 CE, in the evening…


For further consideration re the real causes behind the most dazzling meteor showers…


Is this an example of how an annual meteor event, such as the Taurid Meteor shower, is being greatly enhanced by an alignment between the Sun, the Earth, a comet, and others, e.g. the Moon or Jupiter? (For details, please consider the line of thought within this article of mine!)


Perhaps(?) one example of Kronk’s “most exciting meteor showers on record;” while also perhaps(?) an example of the annual “Taurid meteor shower,” which peaks annually on November 4/5 (cf. this link!)


Cf. the item above re the Nov 13, 1833 CE Halley’s Comet event!


Quote from Ellen G. White in Europe 1885-1887 by D.A.Delafield, p. 236-8; and from Manuscript 73, 1886 by Ellen G. White:

   Leaving Valence on Wednesday, November 3, Ellen White and the Ingses took third-class passage and found themselves in the midst of thirty-three Italians emigrating back to Italy from America. {EGWE 236.2}

   At Modane the party was able to transfer to second class, and that evening arrived safely in Turin, where they spent the night. The next morning it was on to Torre Pellice for her third and final visit to the Piedmont valleys.{EGWE 236.4}

   The same evening she arrived in Torre Pellice, Ellen White witnessed an unusual occurrence, a spectacular star shower. She had been but a girl of five when the “stars fell” on November 13, 1833, and probably slept through it all. [A spectacular part of the 1833 star shower occurred very early in the morning in Portland, Maine, her home town. (See The Great Controversy, 332-334.)] But she didn’t miss this November star shower.{EGWE 237.3}

   “Here I was looking upon a sight I never expected to see—the starry heavens ablaze with shooting, falling stars, each leaving a tail of light in its passage across the heavens, and then disappearing. They were crisscrossing in every direction, yet we could not miss any of these bright jets of light. With emotions I cannot described, we looked for hours upon these shooting, flashing meteors. I looked upon the snowcapped Alps, and the flashing lights seemed to fall directly upon them.... What did it mean?

   When we returned at midnight the same scenes continued. But for all the hundreds of stars flying across the heavens, we could not miss one—not a single glory in the starry host seemed to be missing. The following nights we had no such scene repeated. God’s host still shines in the firmament of the heavens.”—Manuscript 73, 1886.

[This item was first added at the beginning of Day Five 5923[(*??*)] 05 15 2027 [Thursday 2011-09-15.]]


A potential for an encounter with a comet??? Possibly with fragments from the 3D/Biela comet that split and disappeared in 1852, or with debris in the path of Halley’s Comet?

Sometime in the interval between 11-11-2011 and 6-1-2012…

This hypothetical, but potentially most important, 2012 related item is being suggested by a coded message in the Bible as published also in The Bible Code by Michael Drosnin. Cf. also the book Computorah by Moshe Katz.


If someone could contribute to my work along these lines by sending me a version of Moshe Katz’ software that is compatible with either Windows XP or Windows 7/64-bit version, I would very much appreciate it. Thanks!


The software I bought with the book years ago is designed for a 286/16-bit computer.


For more details re this item, please press this link!


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[1] Original footnote: “July 13, 364 BCE”

[2] Original footnote: “September 20, 331 B.C.

[3] Original footnote: “In 357 B.C. See the Dion, xxiv.

[4] Original footnote: “This too establishes a date: August 23, 357 B.C.Notice: The August 23, 357 BC eclipse was a solar, and not a lunar eclipse, and, that solar eclipse was definitely not visible from Sicily at all!

[5] Original footnote: “To the ancient reader, this is a very specific and meaningful piece of information. The "rising" meant is the heliacal rising, that is, the first day of a season on which a star rises just before the Sun, only to blink out very quickly in the latter's rays. The date varies for each star with the observer's latitude, and, much slower — at the rate at which the sun precesses thru the zodiac — over the centuries; in 357 B.C., the heliacal rising of Arcturus in Sicily was (give or take a day for my own lack of absolutely tip-top information) September 20th. Thruout classical Antiquity, therefore, it marked the approximate beginning of fall and the stormy season, which is why Arcturus suddenly blinks into our text at this point.

[6] Original footnote: “This has been identified as the total lunar eclipse of Sep 1, 218 B.C….”

[7] SNB Oct 6, 15 BCE sunset: 17:23:18 with the moon 0° 24’ 30” above the eastern Jerusalem horizon; moonrise: 17:20:07 in eclipse, first visible portion: 17:20:40.

[8] SNB Oct 23, 15 BCE sunset: 17:03:54; moonset: 18:24:55; lag: 81 min 01 sec; illum.: 4.01% ==> Sun Nov 17, 15 BCE sunset was the beginning of Bul 25, 15 BCE. Sunset of March 30, 15 CE was almost certainly the Aviv New Moon. Thus, this Jupiter event took place on Day One of the second week following king Jeroboam’s feast… or, in modern terminology, the 2nd Advent before Christmas… That is, if that is indeed a true relationship – as it appear to me also this particular year: 2010 CE.

[9] exortus: “perf part pass masc nom sg [of exorior;] to come out, come forth, spring up, rise, appear.”

[10] crinitae, crinitus, crinio: “covered with hair, hairy, with flowing locks, long-haired.” Cf. footnote #18 below!

[11] stella, stellae, stello etc.: ”a star” vs. ”stella comans, i.e. a comet.” In his work De Vita Caesarum [The Twelve Caesars] Suetonius is using this word seven times only [There are 4 listings for ‘stello,’ which however are part of the 7 for listed for ‘stella.’ A comprehensive review of these passages has been made showing that the word ‘stella’ etc. without more is not used for referencing a comet. To indicate a comet ‘stella comans,’ ‘stella crinita,’ or ‘crinitae stellae’ is used.

[12] quam: “who? which? what? what kind of a?; in what manner? how? whereby? by what means? why?; Relat., in what manner, to what degree, how greatly, how, how much.”

[13] cometes: “masc nom sg; a comet”

[14] uocant = vocant: “pres ind act 3rd pl [of voco;] to call, summon, invoke, call together, convoke.”

[15] Original footnote: “For 239.”

[16] Original footnote: “Probably that of the 2nd April, 238.

[17] On my Starry Night Backyard software, while locking in on Cassiopeia for nightly predawn views, I find only one comet within 20 years, plus minus, of 400 CE.

That one comet is indeed followed by three total lunar eclipses, 1) Jan 17, 390 CE, 2) Jul 13, 390 CE, and 3) Jan 7, 391 CE. The third and last one of these, however, is setting behind the horizon before having more than 10% of its diameter eclipsed, that is, barely noticeable from the Rome horizon…

That one comet is Halley’s Comet, which I see first becoming at all visible in the early pre-dawn eastern sky, in the constellation Gemini, around July 14, 389 CE, then rising over the horizon daily while growing in intensity, while passing the constellation Auriga (October 18-25, 389 BCE) and the constellation Camelopardalis (October 26-27) before reaching the constellation Cassiopeia (which is adjacent to the constellation Cepheus) where it could be seen in the NNW at sunrise (06:40:47 AM) on October 28, 389 BCE. On October 30 the comet set behind the NNW horizon as the sun rose in the east. On October 31 it passed the constellation Andromeda, on November 1 the end of its bright tail covered Andromeda while its main body passed the constellation Lacerta and entered the constellation Pegasus from which it exited on November 6. From November 6 through 11 it passed the constellation Equuleus while beginning to grow a little fainter, thence passing the constellation Aquarius November 12-22, the constellation Aquila November 23-29, and lastly becoming quite dim while in the constellation Capricorn from which it exited on December 16 while entering the constellation Sagittarius as it was also disappearing behind the horizon in the WSW. After that, though now much fainter, it rose with the sun, just before sunrise (7:40 AM,) still in the constellation Sagittarius, which it exited February 23, 390 CE, passing the constellation Scorpius, which it exited March 9, 390 CE, then the constellation Norma, which it exited March 14, 390 CE, then Lupus, which it exited March 19, 390 CE, then essentially disappearing while exiting the constellation Centaurus on April 9, 390 CE. Being very faint it then passed the constellations Hydra, Corvus, and Crater before disappearing above the western evening horizon around June 12, 390 CE.

[18] Phoebus is associated (Wikipedia) with the sun from the third century CE.

[19] Lycaon’s daughter seems to be associated by Wikipedia with Callisto, which is a star in the constellation Leonis.

[20] I do not find the Getic Wain in Wikipedia, only ‘Wain’ as a ‘wagon.’ Neither did I find in on Google. Perhaps it is a synonym for Ursa Major, just as in Swedish where there is “Stora Björnen” and ”Karlavagnen,” which latter half of the latter name means ‘wagon?’

[21] Tol comment: Based upon the etymology of the Greek word here used, based upon what the average modern reader would likely understand by the words “summer” and “beginning” respectively, and based upon the very different concepts of calendar reckoning used by cultures other than our own, I prefer “the beginning…” over and above “the summer.” For a more specific explanation of my basis for the use of “beginning,” please cf. this link!

[22] ToL comment: Based upon proof provided within Georgii Phrantzae’s own work Annales, there can be no reasonable doubt re the exact timing of this event in terms of the Julian/Gregorian calendar. For specifics, please cf. this link!

[23] Bernard Taylor’s original footnote: The phrase ομφαίᾳ τιν οικς.

[24] ToL comment: Based upon my findings in Starry Night Backyard, and based also upon the fact that the concepts of astronomy at that time, as displayed by Georgii Phrantzae’s own words (in section 7, 8, and 9 on pages 378-380 of his work,) are very different from modern concepts of astronomy, I prefer the paraphrased words here displayed in blue font.

A more literal translation (of mine) of the corresponding Greek words of the original would be “out of the diminishing [εκ τον δυτικων] portion [μερον] of each [εκαστης] of the [consecutive] starry night sky [αφ εσπερας] horizons [οριζοντος,]” but such a literal translation is not clear English.

Bernard Taylor’s translation of these same Greek words are “out of the western parts of the horizon from the beginning of each evening.” As I see it, these words of Bernard Taylor could be understood in terms of my above paraphrase, but are more likely to paint a different picture than that which I perceive in my astronomy software reconstruction of this event.


[25] ToL comment: Based upon the facts of this event, as reproduced in astronomy software such a Starry Night Backyard, I find that the Greek words here used by Georgii Phrantzae cannot be a reference either to a total lunar eclipse, nor can it be understood in terms of the comet approaching the “full moon” physically. That is, the Greek word “πανσεληνω” cannot be a reference to the astronomical full moon event per se. Instead, it seems to me that the Greek words “τη σεληνη πλησιασας πανσεληνω” must necessarily be a reference to a time subsequent to that time when the moon was visible to the eye as a “full moon.” That is, the time reference implied by the Greek must be in reference  to an “aging moon.”

Thus, looking closely at the Greek language here used, it seems to me as though the Greek word “πλησιασας” is not a reference to the physical approach between the moon and the comet (where, in fact, the moon was rapidly approaching the comet and not the other way around,) but is a reference rather to the time and phase of the moon in relation to the completed visible full moon. That is, at the time when the comet chanced to become eclipsed behind the moon.  More…

[26] Bernard Taylor’s original footnote: ξιφοειδς.

[27] ToL comment: Based upon my Starry Night Backyard reconstruction of this event, I prefer the translation here displayed in blue font.

As I see it, Bernard Taylor’s translation “[the comet’s] moving from the west and making its way to the east and having approached (to) the moon…” may not be giving full justice to all of the Greek words within the following alternate translation: “and having pursued [πορειαν] an encounter with [ποιουντα,] and [having successfully] come into an intimate connection [πλησιασαντα] with the moon.More…

[28] ToL comment: Based my Starry Night Backyard reconstruction of this event, I find the word “gloom” over and above “darkness” in this setting.

[29] Bernard Taylor’s original footnote: κλειψις.

[30] Bernard Taylor’s original footnote: A different word than that used above the two times for the eclipse, but a synonym: σκτωσις.

[31] ToL comment: First, I notice that the exact local Constantinopel (i.e. Istanbul) time for the astronomical full moon was September 18 at 03:18.

Second, based upon my own in depth study of ancient chronology, and upon how the Greek authors and translators of ancient times gave reference to specific dates of the month or week, I have found that the rules given by modern Greek grammar are largely being misconstrued by giving preference to ‘duration’ over and above ‘specific point in time.’ The Greek word used in Georgii Phrantzae’s text is “ηεμερας.” This form of that Greek word is either genitive singular or else accusative plural. The modern Greek grammar provides that when understood in terms of accusative the text is to be understood in terms of ‘duration,’ but if understood in term of genitive it is to be understood in terms of ‘point in time.’ Thus, passages using this form of said Greek word are liable to be mistranslated, and, given the pressure of conventional translations of such texts, such passages are mostly being, in fact, mistranslated. As a comparison within the English language, please consider the English use of terms such as “the first day of…” and “Day One of…” etc.!

This particular Greek text of Georgii Phrantzae makes this fact stand out quite clearly. I have no doubt but that most anyone living in an area with frequent earthquakes would agree that recurring “light earthquakes” at the same time every morning for 18 days is not something that could likely represent a true real time event. Accordingly, I find Bernard Taylor’s translationearly in the morning there were some light earthquakes for eighteen days” impossible, albeit clearly in harmony with conventional and traditional “wisdom.” More…

[32] A more comprehensive copy of Phrantzae’s work may be found at this link.