Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Measuring the Hours

In Teleleli and the islands around, 'hours' is a general term for a reasonably long time that is less than a morning, afternoon or night. The notion of an 'hour' as a specific length of time does not exist.

A 'day' may mean an exact day - usually measured from sunset to sunset - or it may refer to a working day, depending on context.

When Telelelenes need to co-ordinate exact time, for example in arranging to meet, they may use sunset or sunrise, noon, or 'moonrise' during that part of the year when the moon appears before sunset. They may also use the ringing of various temple bells. The timing of these bells, usually rung as a call to prayer, is in turn calculated based on the position of the sun, moon and stars.

The time between sunset and midnight is known as the 'Dog Watch', and that between midnight and sunrise as the 'Graveyard Watch', particularly in the context of piracy.

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