Annus magnus. The Chaldaic astronomers observed that the fixed
stars shift their places at about the rate of a degree in seventy-two
years, according to which calculation they will perform one revolution
in 25,920 years, at the end of which time they will return to their “as
you were.” This revolution of the fixed stars is the annus magnus. The Egyptians made it 30,000 years, and the Arabians 49,000. (See Abulhasan's Meadows of Gold.)
For a year and a day.
In law many acts are determined by this period of time—e.g
. if a person wounded does not die within a year and a day, the offender
is not guilty of murder; if an owner does not claim an estray within
the same length of time, it belongs to the lord of the manor; a year
and a day is given to prosecute appeals, etc.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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