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The first aggregate length evolved by Carnac’s astronomical culture was the megalithic yard. Le Manio’s Quadrilateral presents its discovery as the relationship between the solar year of 365.25 days and the lunar year of 12 months, about eleven days shorter, over three years. Reconciling these two types of year enables the behaviour of the sun and the moon to be understood numerically, as lengths. Day-inch counters took the common factor between the two periods and saw that time cycles have points that resynchronise: Three years is a near anniversary of the sun and moon in the same phase or relationship.

Le Manio therefore presents a triangle in which the solar year is the longer side and the lunar year the shorter. As that triangle grows with the counting, at the end of the third solar year the moon’s phase is nearly that of three years before, irrespective of the starting point of the count. 




Figure 1 The day counting line defined by the midsummer solstice at Le Manio Quadrilateral. Above: Photo of the site from the north-east. Left: Photo of the distinctive “sun gate” including stone P where the counting began. Bottom right: the geometry that can generate the megalithic yard as a difference in day-inch counts for three lunar and three solar years.

The difference in length of the three solar and three lunar year counts can be quantified as the difference between 1095 ¾ and 1063 1/8th day-inches, if 1/8th of a day-inch was an achievable level of accuracy. The differential length appears at Le Manio between stone Q and Q’ as being 32 5/8ths day-inches, within the range of the megalithic yard identified by Alexander Thom throughout Britain and at Carnac.

The situation as found by my brother and I is as in figure 1. The three solar years count, made at the sun’s summer solstice angle, is that of a 3-4-5 triangle (to stone G), reaching three solar years at a dressed edge at stone R. This end of the solar count was made to form a right angled triangle above the southern kerb of stones at a point Q, where three lunar years of counting comes to an end, all counts starting from the distinctive Sun Gate.

The megalithic yard represents something cosmic, that divides into both the solar and lunar years and many monuments employ this yard within their construction, not just for reasons of time counting but also for building many other structures, such as those based upon the 3-4-5 triangle, found at this latitude because the triangle locates the summer and winter solstice sun on the horizon to east and west - the Crucuno (three-by-four) Rectangle being a perfect example.