My last post was very appreciatively tweeted by Vox Hiberionacum with the following line: ‘Gorgeous pics and potentially fascinating alignment if true’.
With it he clearly identified a very important aspect of the lunar alignment at the Grianán – it has to be established, that what happened at the October moon was not just a one off occurrence and evidence has to be provided, where there is so far only intriguing conjecture.
But as so often, that would proof to be more difficult than anticipated. Not only had the by now distinguished cloud cover to be taken into account but also the very confusing movements of the moon. After a fascinating and in equal measurers disheartening conversion with Gerry Moran and Paddy Rathbone (both Buncrana Camera Club) back in October, concerning the complexity of the moon, I came to the conclusion, that the Hopi’s description of it is a very polite one and that I have to resort to the ancient practice of observation and see what will happen in the hope that the original builders correctly calculated the perfect position of the monument with the alignment still and partially working, no matter where the moon will rise in the run up to the minor lunar standstill.
How drastic the point of moonrise can change became clear in early November as its position moved from the east on November 4, by some considerable degrees to the northeast on November 7. Such radical swing altered the angle of light entering the entrance and the width and length of the beam. While on the first occasion, and the very short opportunity to capture it, the northern wall of the entrance was illuminated, on the second sighting the southern side was lit. The beam also had changed position as well as size and shape. With the moon moving even further north in December, the light may not reach beyond the end of entrance and stretch inside of the monument.
Here is one link that may explain the ‘wobble’ of the moon:
Lunar Alignments in Early Bronze Age Scotland/Key Lunar Declinations