It appears nevertheless to have become tolerably clear that the nakshatras were both native to India, and the sieu to China, but that the manazil were mainly of Indian derivation.
12 The essential difference, however, between the nakshatras and the sieu is that the latter were equatorial, not ecliptical, divisions.
13 The use of the specially observed stars constituting or representing the sieu was as points of reference for the movements of sun, moon and planets.
All that is certainly known about the antiquity of the sieu is that they were well established in the 3rd century B.C. Their initial point at the autumnal equinox marked by Kio (Spica Virginis) suits a still later date; and there is no valid evidence that the modern series resulted from the rectification of an older superannuated arrangement, analogous to the Krittika sequence of nakshatras.
The whole system of junction stars was doubtless an imitation of the sieu; the choice of them by the Hindu astronomers of the 6th century A.D.
Twenty-four out of twenty-eight were formed, at least in part, of nakshatra or sieu stars.'
The model of the sieu was, however, also regarded.
Euphratean exploration has so far brought to light no traces of ecliptical partition by the moon's diurnal motion, unless, indeed, zodiacal associations be claimed for a set of twenty-eight deprecatory formulae against evil spirits inscribed on a Ninevite tablet.4 The safest general conclusions regarding this disputed subject appear to be that the sieu, distinctively and unvaryingly Chinese, cannot properly be described as divisions of a lunar zodiac, that the nakshatras, though of purely Indian origin, became modified by the successive adoption of Greek and Chinese rectifications and supposed improvements; while the manazil constituted a frankly eclectic system, in which elements from all quarters were combined.
The sieu, on the other hand, were early naturalized in Japan.