The planets move to varying degrees and occasionally meet up to create constellations. Around two per cent of the sky is actually named after the planets, moons, and comets. The Hunter’s Moon is special because it occurs after the Summer Triangle and the winter constellations have reached the height of their glory, providing a slightly dimming light, and therefore putting off any more stargazing.
Oddly enough, the meaning of the name in Latin was not close to the simplest: “who hunts the birds”.
The Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei first observed the Moon’s location and position as he was descending the Sistine Chapel when a clearly visible orb rose in the sky. Not being a medieval scholar he therefore named the moon after the elder sister of his favourite teacher, Cabeus of Apollo.
As an astronomer of the seventeenth century and extremely romantic, Galileo believed the Moon could influence our planet and knew that the different phases of the Moon affect tides and Earth’s rotation. According to early experts, the Moon’s lunar phases affect the Earth by an average of 2.5% with each month its phases lasting a period of 9 hours and 20 minutes.
These astronomers also believed that the Moon’s movements through space were influenced by the Sun and the four planets. While all the planets rotate on their own axes, the Moon circles the Earth in an ellipse called an ellipse with an axis perpendicularly inclined to Earth.
Thus, on a good day the line of the Moon’s motion would roughly equal the angle of the Earth’s orbit to the Sun – making the Moon’s time very close to the Sun’s angle for this small period – while on a bad day the Moon would perfectly parallel the Earth’s axis.
Since the Moon also changes its position along the axis with Earth, then while on a good or bad day it will act as a tidal distorter to Earth – exactly as was predicted.
To demonstrate the Moon’s effect the Jesuit-alchemist, Tobias Scheuchenzeller, in 1605 suggested that by measuring the length of hours for all the days of the year, by determining the earth’s elliptical orbit, one could determine the length of each year’s summer and winter solstices.
Scheuchenzeller performed this calculation using the French astronomer, Juan Orlandi, who had solved the sun’s motions using Carl Friedrich Gauss’ aulde torquo (axial tilt). Scheuchenzeller laid out a formula known as Monte Adobe, which calculates the Earth’s tilt.
Monte Adobe shows that the Earth orbits the Sun with a center of mass at 81 degrees, and the Earth’s tilted at 64 degrees. This means that in the year 360 degrees (360°) of Earth’s orbital plane, every 49 hours, some solar spot is present at a tilt of 64 degrees. If the Earth would orbit at the same axis as Earth would, then on any particular year the Earth would circle the Sun at a point in time equal to 180° of 365°, or 69° during a week. The last six solar spots on a day are the wrong angle of 252°, as seen from Earth.
In that way, the space-time system works by, for example, dividing the fullness of each day into a 360° diameter of total number of hours. The first words of this formula are the same – ‘g’ and ‘o’ – so that if you divide the total number of hours in the day by 180° of 365°, and the circumference of the Earth by 360°, then that would give the ‘o.’ This can be converted to 180° and then 61° of 360°.
This means that the Moon’s shadows are 70° in diameter. This is currently estimated to the year since 1559 and stands at 41°, going from 66° on a good day to 81° on a bad day.
According to Scheuchenzeller’s estimation, a year could be defined as 398 days, or 77 hours, 50 seconds, and the Moon could act a tidal distender to the Earth during that period. According to Monte Adobe, if the Moon were there in the right axis, then on a bad day when the Moon were 29° from the Earth’s axis, the moon would have an influence of 57% on Earth’s spin and cause an Earth tilt on its axis.
Though it is not applicable, Scheuchenzeller’s maths and values enabled a straightforward solution to the puzzle – perfect version – for the winter solstice.
This means that the Hunter’s Moon is named after the older man, Cabeus (Caphos in Greek), who once grew the “most beautiful hunter’s beard” and was supposedly created by the