Aries (constellation)

Infobox Constellation
name=Aries
abbreviation=Ari
genitive=Arietis
symbology=the Ram
RA=3
dec=+20
areatotal=441
arearank=39th
numbermainstars=3, 10
numberbfstars=67
numberstarsplanets=3
numberbrightstars=2
numbernearbystars=2
brighteststarname=α Ari (Hamal)
starmagnitude=2.0
neareststarname=Teegarden's Star
stardistance=12.6?
numbermessierobjects=0
meteorshowers=
May Arietids
Autumn Arietids
Delta Arietids
Epsilon Arietids
Daytime-Arietids
Aries-Triangulids
bordering =
Perseus
Triangulum
Pisces
Cetus
Taurus
latmax=90
latmin=60
month=December
notes=

Aries (pron-en|ˈɛəriːz, _la. ram, symbol to the east.

Notable features

Aries' stars are rather faint except for α Ari (Hamal) and β Ari (Sharatan). Other important stars are γ Ari (Mesarthim) and δ Ari (Botein).

Teegarden's star, a recent discovery in the constellation, is one of Sun's closest neighbors around 12 light years away. It exhibits one of the largest proper motions known at about 5.06 arc seconds/yr.

Notable deep sky objects

The few deep sky objects in Aries are very dim. They include the galaxies NGC 697 (northwest of β Ari), NGC 772 (southeast of β Ari), NGC 972 (in the constellation's northern corner), and NGC 1156 (northwest of δ Ari).

Graphic visualization

The stars of the constellation Aries can be connected in an alternative way, which graphically shows the ram running (or jumping).

The ram's head consists of the stars α Ari, λ Ari, and β Ari: α Ari being of the second magnitude and beta Arietis of the third magnitude.

The ram's body consists of the stars α Ari, η Ari, ε Ari, 41 Ari, and 35 Ari: ε Ari and 41 Ari being of the fourth magnitude.

The ram's tail consists of the stars 35 Ari, 41 Ari, and 39 Ari.

The star γ Ari, of fourth magnitude, represents the ram's front foot, and the star δ Ari, also of fourth magnitude, represents the ram's hind foot.

Mythology

According to Greek mythology, Aries was a ram, possibly a golden one, that got the gods' mission to save Helle and Phrixos from a king Cretheus for false accusations. The ram managed to save Phrixos into the land of Colchis, while Helle instead ended up in the arms of Poseidon. In gratitude for this, Phrixos sacrificed the ram to the gods and hanged its skin in a temple. [ [http://www.theoi.com/Text/HyginusAstronomica2.html#20 "Astronomica", chapter 20, Hyginus, translation by Mary Grant] ]

Astrology and religion

The Western astrological sign Aries of the tropical zodiac (March 21April 20) differs from the astronomical constellation and the Hindu astrological sign of the sidereal zodiac (August 15 - October 15).

References

*H. A. Rey, "The Stars—A New Way To See Them". Enlarged World-Wide Edition. Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1997. ISBN 0-395-24830-2.
*Ian Ridpath and Wil Tirion (2007). "Stars and Planets Guide", Collins, London. ISBN 978-0007251209. Princeton University Press, Princeton. ISBN 978-0691135564.

External links

* [http://www.allthesky.com/constellations/aries/ The Deep Photographic Guide to the Constellations: Aries]
* [http://www.nightskyinfo.com/constellations/aries/ NightSkyInfo.com: Constellation Aries]
* [http://www.ianridpath.com/startales/aries.htm Star Tales – Aries]


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