[NetBehaviour] Historical Celestial Atlases on the Web.

marc marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Mon May 1 12:51:42 CEST 2006

Historical Celestial Atlases on the Web.

Man has always been fascinated with the solemn and mysterious parade of 
the celestial luminaries in the night sky. As the earliest-known texts 
of various ancient cultures attest, the stars were commonly grouped into 
constellations which were believed to represent divine persons, sacred 
animals and other objects of religious importance.

Of course, each of the major cultures stemming from of the Near East, 
the Far East and the New World developed an indigenous system of 
constellation figures and associated legends which were recorded in 
written texts or depicted in maps or on globes.

Of these various constellation systems, the Sumerian/Babylonian system 
of constellations would prove to be the most influential as it was their 
system that through successive adoptions, modifications and additions by 
Greek/Roman, Islamic and European astronomers evolved into the 
mathematically defined system of 88 constellations that is currently 
employed in the international astronomical community.


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