The logo of the Melammu Project

The Melammu Project

The Heritage of Mesopotamia and the Ancient Near East

  The Melammu Project
   General description
   Search string
   Browse by topic
   Search keyword
   Submit entry
   Open search
   Thematic search
   Digital Library
   Submit item
   Ancient texts
   Submit link
  Contact us

  The Newsletter
  To Project Information >


Mesopotamian water-clock in India (1)

Printable view
Topics (move over topic to see place in topic list)

05 Scientific knowledge and scholarly lore

05 Scientific knowledge and scholarly lore

Achaemenid Empire
Indian culture

A post-Vedic Indian text employs a linear zig-zag function with a constant difference of one prastha a day to determine the amount of water to be poured into the water-clock for each period of daylight, with a minimum amount at the winter solstice, and the maximum amount at the summer solstice. The amount of water is the length of daylight itself, based on the Babylonian ratio 3:2 of the longest to the shortest day in the year, and unsuitable for latitudes in most of India.

Jyotiṣavedāṅga 7 (Ṛk Recension):
The increase in daylight and the decrease in night-time in the northern course (of the Sun) is a prastha of water, in he southern course it is the reverse. Six muhūrtas in an ayana.

Source (list of abbreviations)
Jyotiṣavedāṅga 7 (Ṛk Recension)


Pingree 1973, 3Pingree, David. “The Mesopotamian Origin of Early Indian Mathematical Astronomy.” Journal for the History of Astronomy 4 (1973) 1-12.
Pingree 1998, 130Pingree, David. “Legacies in Astronomy and Celestial Omens.” In: S. Dalley (ed.). The Legacy of Mesopotamia. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1998, 125-137.

Links (external links will open in a new browser window)
Cf. Mesopotamian water-clock in India (2)

Amar Annus

URL for this entry:

No pictures