VAT 4956 Astronomical Observations

by VM44 55 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • VM44

    Starting a new thread to discuss the astronomical observations recorded in VAT 4956.

  • VM44

    Here is VAT 4956

  • VM44

    The Nov. 1st Watchtower article mentions the following reference in two of its footnotes, 18 and 20.

    Ein astronomischer Beobachtungstext aus dem 37. Jahre Nebukadnezars II. (-567/66); Sitzung vom 1. Mai 1915. [Von] Paul V. Neugebauer und Ernst F. Weidner (1915)

    It can be downloaded from this web page:

    English translation of the title is:

    An astronomical observation text from the 37th Year of Nebuchadnezzar II.

  • Atlantis


    You have a pm!


  • AnnOMaly

    I've also sent you a PM, VM.

  • Larsinger58


    1. Translator Hermann Hunger accused of deliberately misrepresenting reference in Line 18 where he substituted "moon" for "Venus" which affects references in Lines 3 and 14. Hunger admits to the "error" stating he does "not remember" why he inserted moon for a blank in the text instead of Venus or leaving it blank. He is doubted by some because in Line 3 an "error" for the lunar position was noted indicating Hunger cross-checked the lunar positions with the text references which if applied to line 18 would have shown the moon was long past that position by 10 days. Since both the date and the location were provided in the text there was no need to guess which planet was in reference, which was clearly Venus. When line 18 is corrected it also corrects lines 3 and 14 which Hunger have likewise misapplied.

    2. Amateur Biblical chronology Larry Wilson claims lunar positions given in Lines 3 and 14, noted to "errors" for 568 BCE match lunar positions in 511 BCE, the Biblical date for year 37 of Neb2 when the 1st of Cyrus falls in 455 BCE per some Biblical chronologists, most notably Martin Anstey who wrote in 1913 that the Bible removes 82 years of fake chronology from the Persian timeline. The VAT4956 thus is used by those promoting 455 BCE as the true date for the 1st of Cyrus to confirm the revision. That is, the 511 BCE dating was deliberately preserved in the VAT4956 as a cryptic reference to the true chronology and 568 BCE is thus a confrirmed revision and fradulent date. The VAT4956 is thus used as critical evidence of the Bible's true history and timeline.

    3. When the timeline is corrected to reflect year 37 of Neb2 in 511 BCE per lines 3 and 14, it also affects the timing of all the lunar eclipses for this period, including the lunar eclipse recorded in the VAT4956. The specific language associated with the ecilpse does not indicate it was "NU PAP" meaning not seen, and uses the term "DIB" which otherwise is a reference to a position to the upper-right. This would be a reference to the exit point of the eclipse which in 568 BCE, indeed, did exist in the upper right quadrant. Thus the VAT4956 eclipse being seen would indicate yet another misinterpertation or mistranslation by Hermann Hunger of the text. See YouTube video below for more details:

    SUMMARY: The VAT4956 is indeed as CO Jonsson indicates a "most important text" since it is not only proof of astronomical revisionism during the Seleucid Period but also provides the true original dating for year 37 of Neb2 in 511 BCE which confirms the Bible's timeline. When year 37 falls in 511 BCE, then year 23 falls in 525 BCE. Year 23 is the year of the last deportation (Jer. 52:30) which is exactly 70 years prior to their release in the 1st of Cyrus. 525 minus 70 is 455 BCE. The messiah arrives 483 years after the return and rebuilding begins and thus in 29 CE, the confirmed date for the baptism of Christ. Thus the Bible is proven to be true and lies of modern propagandists and anti-Biblicalists exposed. Two other Youtube videos at the above channel discuss the VAT4956 in more detail including the misrepresentation (deliberate or otherwise) of Hermann Hunger.

    Your most welcome!


  • AnnOMaly

    My favorite muppet, I hope you're not going to spam us and derail this thread! But thanks for the bttt.

    Yes, Prof. Hunger did restore 'the moon' into Obverse, line 18 in the English translation. Thank you for bringing that to our attention. The beginning of the line was damaged and it was an 'off the cuff' guess. In the transliteration, the corresponding part was left blank, unrestored. He acknowledged the mistake way back in the late '90s and it was corrected in the academic literature around the same time by J. Koch:

    "Obv. 18 [ ... sha]p MULxKUR sha TIL GÌ[R UR.A ...] is in the translation, according to the astronomical finding, to be amended ..[... Venus was be]low ...', not ..[... the moon was be]low the bright star at the end of the [Lion's] foot [....]', whereby the contradiction is also resolved that the moon was said to have been observed twice near the same fixed star, here beta Virginis, within the same Babylonian month, see Obv. 14 (III 5 = 23. June -567) with Obv. 18 (III [16] = 5. July -567)." - J. Koch, JCS 49, 1997, page 84, footnote 7 [translated from the German]

    Amateur Biblical chronology Larry Wilson claims ... ...

    That's you. Why not just say "As a hopelessly deluded, amateur Biblical chronologist with a Messiah-complex, I think that ... "?

  • Larsinger58

    Hi Ann, my favorite Illuminati counterintelligencia!

    THANK YOU for the quote. I hadn't seen this before. Hunger told me that he felt any corrections would be done in the literature by others. In the medical field and likely other scholastic areas if someone makes a blatant mistake such as this, it is customary to publish a correction yourself officially correcting the error. Otherwise, the original publication stands as being uncorrected.

    But thanks, anyway.

    However, just to run some interference of my own. Let me just say that the text itself gives us the date and location of this this "blank" planet, so it was OBVIOUS that the reference is "Venus." This is amazing though, because when you apply this application to Venus, as we should, then as the quote you provided stated the reference can only ve "beta Virginis." Hunger, however, applied this reference in line 18 to eta-Virginis, the star in Virgo that follows beta-Virginis. So if Hunger had been honest enough to make the correction himself he would have admitted that MUL KUR sa TIL GIR UR-A was not eta-Virginis after all but beta-Virginis as is observed in the text. This would contradict line 3 where the "Rear Foot of the Lion" is applied to beta-Virginis. In other words, you have two star names involved though similar.

    Line 3 is a reference to GIR ar sa UR-A (the Rear Foot of the Lion)N which Hunger applies to beta-Virginis. Line 14 and 18 is a reference to MUL KUR sa TIL GIR UR-A which Hunger then applies to the star behind GIR ar sa UR-A (the bright star behind the Lion's Foot). So when you apply Venus below beta-Virginis, it changes Hunger's star application for the BSBLF from eta-Virginis to beta-Virginis. So the correction is a double one. Not only is the "moon" corrected to "Venus" but the star is corrected from eta-Virginis to beta-Virginis for lines 14 and 18.

    But this also affects his application of beta-Virginis to the star "The Rear Foot of the Lion" (GIR ar sa UR-A) in line 3, which automatically changes from beta-Virginis to sigma-Leonis.

    So in other words, it seems Hunger, by not doing an official correction himself gets out of all the related errors he has made in this text. By allowing others who notice this to correct this in the literature, the other errors and applications he has made may go unnoticed which is precisely the case. Your quote only corrects the obvious for line 18, but not the impacted errors for lines 14 and 3. This suggests Hunger is dishonest and deliberately understood what he was doing in the frirst place, which was trying to promote the "rear foot of the lion" as beta-Virginis rather than sigma-Leonis for the VAT4956. Inserting the false heavenly body 'the moon" in the blank for Line 18 distracts from an earlier correction since anyone looking at the blank and seeing the date and location would have wondered why Hunger didn't just insert "Venus", the obvious reference, in this place. But since this would clearly define the correct stars for lines 3 and 14, inserting "the moon" here, hopefully not noticed, would cover up what he must have known to be an incorrect application.

    So by his officially not correcting line 18, he does not have to officially correct Lines 3 and 14.

    GET IT, my favorite "muppet"?

    Either you are too stupid to understand this Ann, which I don't think you are, or you are running dismissive interference, suggesting you have an agenda to minimalize my reasonable position here.

    If Hunger were brought up on charges of academic fraud, the issue with line 18 would be either that he was totally incompetent since he could have just looked up what planet was in that position on that date, or he was intentionally dishonest. We'll let peer review decide. His current position is "I don't remember" which is the same as taking the 5th.

    Then there is you with your totally funny propagandistic statement that this is an "off the cuff GUESS." Darling, there was no need to GUESS what planet this was. The DATE and LOCATION of the planet was given. There was no need to "guess" here--that's the whole point. And since when does a prominent expert in the field give an "off the cuff guess" and be so incredibly wrong? Professors and professionals don't insert "off the cuff" guesses for something like this. You don't "guess" it was the moon in line 18 and check the lunar position as an "error for the 8th" in line 3, proving Hunger checks the lunar locations against the test. The moon in line 3 was just 1 day off, the moon in line 18 would be ten days off. Why didn't he, if he was just "guessing" note that the moon was inserted there and that it was an "error of ten days"? That is, even he "guessed." That would have been the honest and professional thing to do.

    "Off the cuff guess" for a specific and obvious reference to another planet? Oh paleeze!

    The man is dishonest and so are you. But that's just more of my "deluded" opinion on the issue.

    Anyway, all is forgiven Ann because you provide me with the best reference. You are an incredible researcher even if you don't see the whole picture.

    IN SUMMARY: My "amateur" observation is sufficient for the JIOR (modern spiritual elect) to use the VAT4956 to date year 37 to 511 BCE and it appears this was provided by Jehovah for their use vs. trying to get the dishonest academic world to officially look into Hunger's incompetence or dishonesty. So I personally really don't care at this point. Whenever you or any others decide to actually be honest about this unfortunate situation the text will still be there and so will the 511 BCE reference matches for the "errors" in line 3 and 14. Right now the field of astrochronology relating to this text looks like they are not so bright, as in your case: "an off the cuff GUESS"? Why would a professor make an off the cuff guess that the moon was still in Virgo, let alone BELOW (sap) eta Virginis or beta-Virginis and miss VENUS? I can't stop laughing at this or you. It's beyond ridiculous.

    Normally, Hunger would have to explain his academic reasons for misrepresenting this text. I already know them though. That's because later texts do apply the "Rear Foot of the Lion" to beta-Virginis. So he was in an academic difficult situation and made a decision to cover this up which has come back to haunt him. I think his intentions were reasonably good, that is, to not let this issue distract from the significance of this text. But at this point we need the correct purpose of this text and the accurate translation to prove it was created to "hide in plain sight" the true, original dating or year 37 of Zeb2 that was changed and perfected by the Persians during the reign of Artaxerxes II.

    So at this piont, thinking year 37 was 568 BCE is just a matter of being out of touch or incompetent, in which case there is little concern about trying to get you or anyone else to understand what is going on here. I understand what happened. Hunger understands what happened. The reality is sufficient for me. I just throw this in as part of the discussion.

    By the way, discussing issues about this text is not considered "derailing" it. It's just waking people up to the facts and trying to get through some of your heavy handed propagandistic rhetoric (B.S.). "Off the cuff GUESS?", Ann? ROTFLMHO.

    But you're good at this Ann. You're trying to cover his lying ass, and I understand that, and it works for those not as expert in the entire document. My opinion is that he should be brought up on academic fraud charges, which his lawyer must have realized so told him to simply claim the usual: "I don't remember." So he's a sorry piece of academic work in my opinion and you're just as bad trying to cover up his mess. But I suppose that is what counterintelligence propagandists like yourself have to do.

    Thanks, again, though for the quote. Hope you are well!

    I have the VAT4956 and the SK400 astrotexts in my 455 BCE back pocket at this point, Ann. But fool as many others as you can, my dear.



  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    Does the tone of your reply indicate the effect Christianity has on people's minds?

    Do your snide and personal remarks indicate how Christianity poisons people?

    What advertising is that for Christianity?

    Little wonder religion has been at the root of major conflicts, and still is. When we look at history, we see the outcome of such religious attitudes. The very worst war in modern times, in terms of casuaties compared with the size of the population, was the religious war between the Protestants of England and the Catholics of France, named the Thirty Years' War. Consider the bloody internecine wars of the Christians in the 4th and 5th centuries, the behavious of Christians during the Spanish Inquisition, the effect of the Christians during the invasion of South America, and down to our own days in Ireland, and so on.

    Your personal attacks, which show your self-considered superiority, completely damages your cause.


  • VM44

    I was hoping that this thread would be devoted to a comparison of the VAT 4956 lunar observations with the computed results from the Cartes du Ciel (SKy Maps) astronomical software.

  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    These just some personal musings between you and I, so no one else will know what I am thinking.

    To the average Joe Witness, these esoteric interpetations of ancient characters, results from astronomical software, and such, fly over their heads.

    I guess the average JW simply says, "that's what the 'brothers' in Brooklyn say, and they have the resources. End of story."

    All that the writer of the article needs to say, is that some anonymous people have conducted an undescribed unverified analysis and their unseen report supports the WTS. When this is done, that is good enough for a True Believer, because of who said it -- the WTS.

    What goes through my mind is that there is a number of astronomical tablets in the British Museum, which singly and together confirm the accepted dates for Nebuchadnezzar. There is thus the weight of evidence, not just VAT4956.

    Interestingly, the WTS relies on an astronomical tablet for its method of getting to 539 BCE, so the WTS should not deny the integrity of astronomical tablets out of hand. Pity is that "their" tablet has admitted errors, and it is a calculation, not an observation. So their arguments against records of calculated eclipses is an "own goal".

    Did you see the pic on page 32 of my Critique:


  • AnnOMaly

    THANK YOU for the quote. I hadn't seen this before.

    Yes you have, my fave muppet. I cited the article once and you busied yourself and found the quote. One of your other identities will remember.

    To get the thread back on track:

    Where to start our calculations from?

    According to Parker and Dubberstein's tables, 588 BCE's Nisanu 1 begins sundown April 3 while 568 BCE's Nisanu 1 begins sundown April 22. However, this won't be a straight-forward comparison using P&D's calendar, as will become apparent.

    A starting point for 588 is given in the WT article - p. 28, note 17 - namely, the eclipse of July 15 falling in the Babylonian month 3. Counting back from there, and remembering the alternate 29 and 30 day months as specified on the tablet, Nisanu 1 has to fall on May 2 at sunset.

    Therefore, the comparison is between the P&D 568 BCE year (based on interlocking tablet evidence) and the researcher's 588 BCE 'eclipse-in-month-3' based calendar.

    In addition, a useful resource (in addition to P&D's tables) to determine first naked eye visibility of the new lunar crescent, which heralds the first day of the month, can be found HERE

  • VM44

    So the first step is to determine for which Julian dates to run the astronomical software.

    The next step is to convert the VAT 4956 lunar observations into angular measurements.

    The third step would be performing the comparison.

  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    Please do not ask me to comment or explain. I am certain your skills far exceed mine.

    I am simply providing this information as background, given your interest in Julian dating. From my simple reading of the following, it seems possible that caution needs to be exercised when plotting Julian dates into a system, since these guys seem to have a Julian day number (JDN) as well as a Julian ephemeris date (JED). Whether that has any significance for you, I cannot even begin to guess.

    Here then is the piece that speaks about converting from either the Julian or Gregorian calendar to the JDN (if that matters to you)



    On a systematic solar calendar - such as the Julian or Gregorian system - it is a relatively straightforward matter to calculate the exact number of days between any two selected epochs. Most computations of this sort make use of the Julian day number (JDN), devised by Joseph Justus Scaliger (AD 1540-1609). This scheme is based on a cycle of 7980 Julian years, commencing in 4713 BC. The precise epoch from which Julian days are numbered is Greenwich noon on Jan 1 (Julian calendar) in that year. A major reference epoch is 1900.0 (i.e. Greenwich noon on 1899 Dec 31), for which the JDN is 2415020.0. Since most modern astronomical computations make use of terrestrial time, it has become customary to use the Julian ephemeris date (JED) where necessary; this begins at 12h TT.

    Various algorithms have been developed to convert from either the Julian or Gregorian calendar to the JDN, among the simplest being those deduced by Muller (1975), which make full use of the rules of FORTRAN. These are given in equations (1.20) and (1.21). Here J is the JDN, Y the year, M the month and D the day of the month; all variables are treated as integer.

    For any date AD on the Gregorian calendar:

    J=367*Y - 7*(Y+(M+Y)/12)/4 - 3*((Y+(M-9)/7)/100+l)/4+275*M/9+D+1721029. (1.20)

    For any date on the Julian calendar the following simpler formula applies:

    J=367*Y-7(Y+5001+(M-9)/7)/4+275*M/9+D+1729777. (1.21)

    I have employed these formulae in many of the computer programs which I have developed.

    (Historical Eclipses and Earth’s Rotation, pages 31-32, F Richard Stephenson)

  • Quendi



  • VM44

    Thank you Doug for that quote from Stephenson's book concerning Julian Day Numbers.

    It looks like Stephenson will be required reading for this research.

  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    It seems to me that it is one thing to document the outcomes of calculations, however I think it is important also to document the input side.

    For example, what are the inputs? their criteria? any assumptions? how do these impact the results? and so on.

    Is it possible to run the program on a tablet for which there is no controversy as a double-check?

    OK. I know it's tough. All that the W/T did was to make an unsubstantiated claim, but I am interested in knowing that any results and outcomes can be substantiated, even if that ultimately requires a documented report.


  • AnnOMaly

    With regard to Julian day numbers, don't worry too much about them. It depends on the software, but the more user-friendly astronomy programs will have all those calculations incorporated into their system, and any BC date you punch in will be Julian dating.

    Parker and Dubberstein's tables (these are a must-have and not expensive) are Julian dating - just remember that theirs are dates beginning midnight - the Babylonian 'day' would begin the previous evening, so e.g. if Nisanu 1 is listed in P&D as April 23, it actually means Nisanu 1 started, for the Babylonians, the previous evening (April 22) at sunset.

    1 cubit = 2° (other slightly different values have been suggested, but this is the one Sachs/Hunger and Furuli use).

    1° = 4 minutes of time

    'In front of' and 'behind' will likely be in hours/minutes of time (e.g. Right Ascension measurement).

    'Above' and 'below' will be in degrees and minutes of arc (e.g. declination).

    Hope that helps.

  • Doug Mason
    Doug Mason


    you have a pm.


  • Alleymom

    VM44 --

    What would you think about taking an easier approach for the first go-round on this?

    If you are interested, we could just start by looking at the “Lunar Three” intervals on VAT 4956 and forget everything else for the moment. The so-called "Lunar Three" measurements just involve the times of sunrise, sunset, moonrise, and moonset, so they are quite easy to do.

    When Rolf Furuli went through VAT 4956 line by line a few years ago, I pointed out that he omitted the sunrise-moonset, moonrise-sunrise, and sunset-moonset measurements recorded on six lines of VAT 4956. He looked at the other measurements on those lines, but he just skipped over the Lunar Three measurements.

    And guess what? The “Lunar Three” intervals recorded on six lines of VAT 4956 are, by themselves, enough to disprove the WT’s date of 588/587 BCE as Nebuchadnezzar's 37th year.

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