al·​mu·​can·​tar | \ ¦almyü¦kantə(r) \
variants: or less commonly almacantar \ -​mə-​ \
plural -s

Definition of almucantar

1 : a small circle of the celestial sphere parallel to the horizon and connecting all points of equal altitude two stars on the same almucantar
2 : a telescope mounted on a mercurial float and used for observing the heavenly bodies as they cross a given almucantar

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First Known Use of almucantar

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for almucantar

alteration (probably influenced by Medieval Latin almucantarath) of earlier almicanter, from Middle English almicanteras (plural), from Middle French almicantarath, from Medieval Latin almicantarath, almucantarath, from Arabic al-muqanṭarāt the almucantars, from al- the + muqanṭarāt, plural of muqanṭarah almucantar, sundial, from qanṭarah bridge, arch

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The first known use of almucantar was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Almucantar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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