Or constellations, and each received a name suggested by mythological or other figures.
These were: (I) that the earth must be spherical, because of the tendency of matter to fall together towards a common centre; (2) that only a sphere could always throw a circular shadow on the moon during an eclipse; and (3) that the shifting of the horizon and the appearance of new constellations, or the disappearance of familiar stars, as one travelled from north to south, could only be explained on the hypothesis that the earth was a sphere.
In the formation of the constellations of the zodiac little regard was paid to stellar configurations.
Moreover, we have good reasons for inferring that different constellations of external causes may determine whether the internal physiological disturbances induced by a given agent shall lead to pathological and dangerous variations, or to changes which may be harmless or even advantageous to the plant concerned.
Their priesthood was a highly trained profession, and they had schools which taught a knowledge of the stars and constellations, for many of which they had names.
They exhibit in an exaggerated form the irregularities of distribution visible in our zodiacal constellations, and present the further anomaly of being frequently reckoned as twenty-eight in number, while the ecliptical arcs they characterize are invariably twenty-seven.
The Hindu zodiacal constellations belong then to an earlier epoch than the Chinese " stations," such as they have been transmitted to our acquaintance.
They were divided on the same principle; each opened at the spring equinox; the first Arab sign Sharatan was strictly equivalent to the Hindu Acvini; and eighteen constellations in each were virtually coincident.
(Vitruvius names Cicero and Lucretius as post nostram memoriam nascentes.) The subjects of the eight chapters are - (1) the signs of the zodiac and the seven planets; (2) the phases of the moon; (3) the passage of the sun through the zodiac; (4) and (5) various constellations; (6) the relation of astrological influences to nature; (7) the mathematical divisions of the gnomon; (8) various kinds of sundials and their inventors.
Associated with the Sky are tablets to the sun and moon, the seven stars of the Great Bear, the five planets, the twenty-eight constellations, and all the stars of heaven; tablets to clouds, rain, wind and thunder being placed next to that of the moon.
After her death she was placed by Athena amongst the constellations in the northern sky, near Perseus and Cassiopeia.
In the main, however, the constellations transmitted to the West from Babylonia by Aratus and Eudoxus must have been arranged very much in their present order about 2800 B.C. E.
Maraldi), giving zoneobservations of 10,000 stars, and describing fourteen new constellations; "Observations sur 515 etoiles du Zodiaque" (published in t.
" Partly by confounding the parentage of the race with a conspicuous object marking the natal region of the race, partly by literal interpretation of birth names, and partly by literal interpretation of names given in eulogy " (such as Sun and Bull, among the Egyptian kings), and also through " implicit belief in the statements of forefathers," there has been produced belief in descent from mountains, sea, dawn, from animals which have become constellations, and from persons once on earth who now appear as sun and moon.
Xxi.) also show the stars into which they were metamorphosed, as the Eskimo and Australians and Aryans of India and Greeks have recognized in the constellations their ancient heroes.
Applying the same method of careful observation to the sun and planets, and later to some of the constellations and to many of the fixed stars, it will be apparent that the body of observations noted must have grown in the course of time to large and indeed to enormous proportions, and correspondingly the interpretations assigned to the nearly endless variations in the phenomena thus observed.
C. 2000 B.C., the combinations of prominent groups of stars with outlines of pictures fantastically put together, but there is no evidence that prior to 700 B.C. more than a number of the constellations of our zodiac had become part of the current astronomy.
From the planets the same association of ideas was applied to the constellations of the zodiac, which in later phases of astrology are placed on a par with the planets themselves, so far as their importance for the individual horoscope is concerned.
With human anatomy thus connected with the planets, with constellations, and with single stars, medicine became an integral part of astrology, or, as we might also put it, astrology became the handmaid of medicine.
From the earliest times the star-groups known as constellations, the smaller groups (parts of constellations) known as asterisms, and also individual stars, have received names connoting some meteorological phenomena, or symbolizing religious or mythological beliefs.
The origin and development of the grouping of the stars into constellations is more a matter of archaeological than of astronomical interest.
Of great importance is the Creation Legend, a cuneiform compiled from older records during the reign of Assur-bani-pal, c. 650 B.C., in which there occurs a passage interpretable as pointing to the acceptance of 36 constellations: 12 northern, 12 zodiacal and 12 southern.
These constellations were arranged in three concentric annuli, the northern ones in an inner annulus subdivided into 60 degrees, the zodiacal ones into a medial annulus of 1 zo degrees, and the southern ones into an outer annulus of 240 degrees.
The earliest Greek work which purported to treat the constellations qua constellations, of which we have certain knowledge, is the 4'atvoµeva of Eudoxus of Cnidus (c. 4 0 3-35 0 B.C.).
The inter-relations of the Phoenicians with the early Hellenes were frequent and farreaching, and in the Greek presentation of the legends concerning constellations a distinct Phoenician, and in turn Euphratean, element appears.
In this enumeration Serpens is included in Serpentarius and Lupus in Centaurus; these two constellations were separated by Hipparchus and, later, by Ptolemy.
Constellations of the Northern Hemisphere >>
The twelve constellations of the zodiac form an ingenious machine, a great wheel with buckets, which pour into the sun and moon, those shining ships that sail continually through space, the portions of light set free from the world.
The people had a knowledge of the stars, of the rising and setting of the constellations at different seasons of the year; by this means they determined the favourable season for making a voyage and directed their course.
The theory of the ecliptic as representing the course of the sun through the year, divided among twelve constellations with a measurement of 30 to each division, is also of Babylonian origin, as has now been definitely proved; but it does not appear to have been perfected until after the fall of the Babylonian empire in 539 B.C. Similarly, the other accomplishments of Babylonian astronomers, such as their system or rather systems of moon calculations and the drawing up of planetary tablets, belong to this late period, so that the golden age of Babylonian astronomy belongs not to the remote past, as was until recently supposed, but to the Seleucid period, i.e.
(Primitive Constellations, 1899) has compiled a Euphratean planisphere, which he regards as the mother of all others.
In the 'acvoµeva of Aratus 44 constellations are enumerated, viz.
It cannot be argued, however, that these were the only stars and constellations named in his time; the omission proves nothing.
The same is true of the Homeric epics wherein the Pleiades, Hyades, Ursa major, Orion and Bootes are mentioned, and also of the stars and constellations mentioned in Job.
Tycho Brahe, when compiling his catalogue of stars, was unable to observe Lupus, Ara, Corona australis and Piscis australis, on account of the latitude of Uranienburg; and hence these constellations are omitted from his catalogue.