28 June 2018

Dog Days

It's a bit hot here at the moment. A lot of people are going mad.

I've just heard two separate "meteorologists" on the telly telling their poor duped public that we are now in the Dog Days.

Really? Has the Heliacal Rising of Sirius truly occurred as early as this in 2018? Why didn't these jokers warn us to get up early so as to watch such a cosmos-shaking event? However can such uncovenanted and irregular celestial phenomena be reconciled with the austere, regimented assumptions of post-Enlightenment Astronomy?

Readers will of course recall Conon, Astronomer of Ptolemy III Euergetes, who inspired Callimachus to describe the catasterised Plokamos of Queen Berenice as calling for a sky-wide muddling of the constellations. Perhaps, nearly 2,300 years later, this has finally happened!!

[Incidentally, I'm rather tempted by a newish theory which identifies the first two lines of Catullus LXVII as really the last two lines of LXVI. The Veronensian archetype lacked a division between these poems (which was, I imagine, inserted by Renaissance editors). This theory would draw support from the fragments of the Callimachean papyrus published by Pfeiffer, who himself comjectured Kh[airete.]

Alternatively, possibly the "meteorologists" have simply been driven berserk by using too much over-perfumed hair-oil. Perhaps some controlled analysis should be undertaken to establish whether the females among them, the bright-eyed bimbos who undulate so winsomely in front of their weather maps, are currently miarotatai and, if so, precisely to what extent.

We need to know.


Matthew said...

Stick to the wireless, Father. Even with the new breed of demotic-voiced continuity announcers it's safer for one's sanity.

Joshua said...

Today was the coldest day of the year so far, here in northern Tasmania - it reached a chilly 7.7ÂșC at 4:00 pm.

Andreas Meszaros said...

"Perhaps some controlled analysis should be undertaken ... "

It is hard to judge by mere appearance: as St. Jerome puts it: "filokosmos genus femineum est; multasque etiam insignis pudicitiae, quamvis nulli virorum, tamen sibi scimus libenter ornari." (Hieronymus: ep. 128)

Pastor in Monte said...

I'm so relieved! I saw the headline 'Dog Days' and immediately thought 'not yet, surely!' As I get older and time goes faster and faster, I need all the chance I can to bathe in spring and summer. Let's leave the dog days where they belong.

Romulus said...

The heliacal rising of a star being a single annual event, the dog days (plural) as they're traditionally termed must denote not a moment but a period, which I take to be the invisibility of Alpha Canis Majoris because of proximity to the Sun. In my latitude, I've spotted Sirius as early as August 7, two weeks after the day when its rising most nearly coincides with the Sun's. If the star's evening disappearance behind the Sun can be said to begin two weeks before that, the entire span of dog days -- in my latitude -- reasonably coincides with the period July 10 - August 7.

Mick Jagger Gathers No Mosque said...

When ABS was living in Maine, the dog days were the campaign events of Senator Susan Collins and Senator Olympia Snowe.

(Was that too churlish?)