S. Battaglia, G. Miglietta and Opera Laboratori Fiorentini
Full scale reproduction of the Zodiac from the Temple of Hathor in Denderah, the first depiction of the heavens in which use is made of stereographic projection. The outermost circle shows 36 decans, each scanning a 10-day interval; the first decan is level with Sirius, the star that heralds the beginning of the year and the arrival of the Nile flood. The second circle shows the constellations in the southern hemisphere. The third circle shows the constellations in the northern hemisphere. The figures of the Zodiac are aligned along the eccentric circle of the ecliptic. The axis joining Cancer to Capricorn (the solstices) points in a north-south direction. The temple's transverse axis is perfectly oriented towards the heliacal rising of Sirius, which rose at 18o east-southeast. Sirius, portrayed as a squatting cow, is correctly shown at the point of maximum culmination on the celestial meridian of the southern hemisphere.