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RE: Constellations
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Constellations That Didn't Make the Cut

The practice of inventing constellations, those imaginary patterns among the stars, predates recorded history and has been done by people around the world. In 140 CE, astronomer Claudius Ptolemy of Alexandria, in his book, The Almagest, listed 48 constellations which came to be the accepted list throughout the Mediterranean region for the next 1,500 years.
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Hercules
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According to Greek mythology, Hercules was born of an affair between the god Zeus and a mortal woman. For that reason, Zeus' jealous wife often tried to get rid of Hercules; however his strength prevailed.
The constellation Hercules, despite lacking bright stars, is easy to locate. It's situated between the two brightest stars of the early summer sky: Arcturus, high in the south, and Vega to the east. Look for the distinctive four corner stars, known as the "Keystone" to identify Hercules.

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RE: Constellations
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Learn the constellations

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Constellation Mythological Forms
Digitally scanned  set of  engravings from the 17th century Uranographicarum star atlas by Johannis Hevelius.

You can use them in planetarium shows, exhibits, videos, and other non-commercial applications.
 (Credit the U.S. Naval Observatory and the Space Telescope Science Institute.)

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NAME MEANING POSSESSIVE AB. LOC. MAIN-STAR REMARKS
Andromeda Chained Lady Andromedae And E-NP Alpheratz=Alpha, Mirach=Beta Perseus myth; Daughter of Cassiopeia and Cepheus
Antlia Air Pump Antliae Ant ES Alpha Modern
Apus Bird of Paradise Apodis Aps SP Alpha Modern
Aquarius Water Bearer Aquarii Aqr ES Sadalsuud=Beta Zodiac; Water Jar
Aquila Eagle Aquilae Aql E Altair=Alpha Summer Triangle
Ara Altar Arae Ara S Beta  
Aries Ram Arietis Ari EN Hamal=Alpha Zodiac
Auriga Charioteer Aurigae Aur E-NP Capella=Alpha  
Bootes Herdsman Bootis Boo EN Arcturus=Alpha  
Caelum Engraving Tool Caeli Cae ES Alpha Modern
Camelopardalis Giraffe Camelopardalis Cam NP Beta Modern
Cancer Crab Cancri Cnc EN Al Tarf=Beta Zodiac
Canes Venatici Hunting Dogs Canum Venaticorum CVn E-NP Cor Caroli=Alpha-2 Modern  
Canis Major Larger Dog Canis Majoris CMa ES Sirius=Alpha Winter Triangle
Canis Minor Smaller Dog Canis Minoris CMi EN Procyon=Alpha Winter Triangle
Capricornus Water Goat Capricorni Cap ES Deneb Algedi=Delta Zodiac
Carina Keel Carinae Car SP Canopus=Alpha Argo
Cassiopeia Queen Cassiopeiae Cas NP Shedar=Alpha Perseus myth; Andromeda's mother
Centarus Centaur Centauri Cen SP Rigil Kentaurus=Alpha Hadar=Beta first mag.
Cepheus King Cephei Cep NP Alderamin=Alpha Andromeda's father
Cetus Whale/Sea Monster Ceti Cet E Deneb Kaitos=Beta Perseus myth
Chamaeleon Chameleon Chamaelontis Cha SP Alpha Modern
Circinus Compasses Circini Cir SP Alpha Modern
Columba Dove Columbae Col ES Phact=Alpha Modern
Coma Berenices Berenices Hair Comae Berenices Com EN Beta "Modern" but old; North Galactic Pole
Corona Australis Southern Crown Coronae Australis CrA E-SP Alfecca Meridiana=Alpha Beta equal
Corona Borealis Northern Crown Coronae Borealis CrB EN Alphecca=Alpha  
Corvus Crow, Raven Corvi Crv ES Gienah=Gamma  
Crater Cup Crateris Crt ES Delta  
Crux Southern Cross Crucis Cru SP Acrux=Alpha Modern
Cygnus Swan Cygni Cyg E-NP Deneb=Alpha Northern Cross, Summer Triangle
Delphinus Dolphin Delphini Del EN Rotanev=Beta  
Dorado Swordfish Doradus Dor SP Alpha Modern
Draco Dragon Draconis Dra NP Eltanin=Gamma North Ecliptic Pole
Equuleus Little Horse Equulei Eql EN Kitalpha=Alpha  
Eridanus River Eridani Eri ES-SP Achernar=Alpha  
Fornax Furnace Fornacis For ES Alpha Modern
Gemini Twins Geminorum Gem EN Pollux=Beta Zodiac; Summer Solstice
Grus Crane Gruis Gru ES-SP Al Nair=Alpha Modern
Hercules Hero; Hercules Herculis Her EN Kornephoros=Beta "The Kneeler"
Horologium Clock Horologii Hor SP Alpha Modern
Hydra Water Serpent Hydrae Hya E-ES Alphard=Alpha  
Hydrus Water Snake Hydri Hyi SP Beta Modern
Indus Indian Indi Ind SP The Persian=Alpha Modern
Lacerta Lizard Lacertae Lac EN-NP Alpha Modern
Leo Lion Leonis Leo EN Regulus=Alpha Zodiac
Leo Minor Smaller Lion Leonis Minoris LMi EN Praecipua=46 Modern
Lepus Hare Leporis Lep ES Arneb=Alpha  
Libra Scales Librae Lib ES Zubeneschamali=Beta Zodiac
Lupus Wolf Lupi Lup ES-SP Alpha  
Lynx Lynx Lyncis Lyn EN-NP Alpha Modern
Lyra Lyre Lyrae Lyr EN Vega=Alpha Summer Triangle
Mensa Table Mensae Men SP Alpha Modern
Microscopium Microscope Microscopii Mic ES Gamma Modern
Monoceros Unicorn Monocerotis Mon E Beta Modern
Musca Fly Muscae Mus SP Alpha Modern
Norma Square Normae Nor ES-SP Gamma-2 Modern
Octans Octant Octantis Oct SP Nu Modern; South Celestial Pole
Ophiuchus Serpent Bearer Ophiuchi Oph E Rasalhague=Alpha With Serpens
Orion Hunter; Orion Orionis Ori E Rigel=Beta Winter Triangle
Pavo Pea**** Pavonis Pav SP Pea****=Alpha Modern
Pegasus Winged Horse Pegasi Peg EN Enif=Epsilon Perseus myth, Great Square
Perseus Hero; Perseus Persei Per EN-NP Mirfak=Alpha  
Phoenix Phoenix Phoenicis Phe EN-NP Ankaa=Alpha Modern
Pictor Easel Pictoris Pic NP Alpha Modern; South Ecliptic Pole
Pisces Fishes Piscium Psc E-EN Kullat Nunu=Eta Zodiac; Vernal Equinox
Piscis Austrinus Southern Fish Piscis Austrini PsA EN Fomalhaut=Alpha  
Puppis Stern Puppis Pup ES-SP Naos=Zeta Argo
Pyxis Compass Pyxidis Pyx SE Alpha Modern
Reticulum Net Reticulii Ret SP Alpha Modern
Sagitta Arrow Sagittae Sge NE Gamma  
Sagittarius Archer Sagittarii Sgr ES Kaus Australis=Epsilon Zodiac; Winter Solstice; Little Milk dipper; Teapot
Scorpius Scorpion Scorpii Sco ES Antares=Alpha Zodiac
Sculptor Sculptor's Studio Sculptoris Scl ES Alpha Modern; South Galactic Pole
Scutum Shield Scuti Sct ES Alpha Modern
Serpens Serpent Serpentis Ser E Unukalhai=Alpha Two parts; with Ophiuchus
Sextans Sextant Sextantis Sex E Alpha Modern
Taurus Bull Tauri Tau NE Aldebaran= Alpha Zodiac; Hyades; Pleiades
Telescopium Telescope Telescopii Tel SP Alpha Modern
Triangulum Triangle Trianguli Tri EN Beta  
Triangulum Australe Southern Triangle Trianguli Australis TrA SP Alpha Modern
Tucana Toucan Toucanae Tuc SP Alpha Modern
Ursa Major Greater Bear Ursae Majoris UMa NP Alioth=Epsilon Big Dipper/Plough
Ursa Minor Smaller Bear Ursae Minoris UMi NP Polaris=Alpha Little Dipper; North Celestial Pole
Vela Sails Velorum Vel ES-NP Regor=Gamma Argo
Virgo Maiden Virginis Vir E Spica=Alpha Zodiac; Autumnal Equinox
Volans Flying Fish Volantis Vol SP Gamma Modern
Vulpecula Fox Vulpeculae Vul EN Anser=Alpha Modern

Engage!



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Constellations are just groupings of stars used to identify a region of the sky.
Some of our recognised constellations predate written records, and most originally came from the myths and legends of Mesopotamia, Egypt and Greece. A few of the constellations were charted by astronomers as late as 1750.
In 1933, the International Astronomical Union specially defined a set of 88 constellations, including their boundaries in the sky. This official definition of our "modern" constellations is used by professional and amateur astronomers today.

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