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28 constellations of Chinese astronomy

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_constellations

Chinese constellations

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
星象图

Chinese constellations (Chinese: 星官, xīngguān) are the groupings used in traditional Chinese culture to organize the stars. They are very different from the modern IAU-recognized constellations based on Greco-Roman astronomy: the only major similarities are clusters similar to the Big Dipper and Orion.[1]

The Babylonian and Egyptian astronomy which formed the basis for Greek astronomy was based upon heliacalobservations, comparing the position of sunrises and sunsets against the stars which appeared before and afterwards. This naturally led to the development of the zodiac: the twelve or thirteen constellations through which the sun appeared to move over the course of the solar year.[1] Against this, ancient Chinese skywatchers focused their attention on the pole star Polaris and divided the stars according to their position relative to it:[1] the Three Enclosures(, Sān Yuán) immediately around the North Celestial Pole whose stars could be seen year-round and Twenty-Eight Mansions (二十八宿, Èrshíbā Xiù) dividing the zodiacal band according to the movement of the moon over alunar month.[2] These lunar mansions are very similar (although not identical) to the Indian Nakshatra and debate continues over which system developed first or whether they developed similarly in isolation.[1]

Three Enclosures

The Three Enclosures are the Purple Forbidden Enclosure (, Zǐ Wēi Yuán), the Supreme Palace Enclosure (, Tài Wēi Yuán) and the Heavenly Market Enclosure (, Tiān Shì Yuán). The Purple Forbidden Enclosure occupies the northernmost area of the night sky. From the viewpoint of the ancient Chinese, the Purple Forbidden Enclosure lies in the middle of the sky and is circled by all the other stars.

The Supreme Palace Enclosure lies east and north to the Purple Forbidden Enclosure, while the Heavenly Market Enclosure lies west and south. The Three Enclosures are separated by “walls”, which are asterisms with their shapes resembling their namesakes.

The Twenty-Eight Mansions

The Twenty-Eight Mansions are grouped into Four Symbols, each associated with a compass direction and containing seven mansions. The names and determinative stars are:[3][4]

Four Symbols
(四象)
Mansion (宿)
Number Name (pinyin) Translation Determinative star
Azure Dragon
of the East (Seiryu)

(東方青龍)
Spring
1 角 (Jiăo) Horn α Vir
2 亢 (Kàng) Neck κ Vir
3 氐 (Dĭ) Root α Lib
4 房 (Fáng) Room π Sco
5 心 (Xīn) Heart σ Sco
6 尾 (Wěi) Tail μ Sco
7 箕 (Jī) Winnowing Basket γ Sgr
Black Tortoise
of the North (Genbu)

(北方玄武)
Winter
8 斗 (Dǒu) (Southern) Dipper φ Sgr
9 牛 (Niú) Ox β Cap
10 女 (Nǚ) Girl ε Aqr
11 虛 (Xū) Emptiness β Aqr
12 危 (Wēi) Rooftop α Aqr
13 室 (Shì) Encampment α Peg
14 壁 (Bì) Wall γ Peg
White Tiger
of the West (Byakko)

(西方白虎)
Fall
15 奎 (Kuí) Legs η And
16 婁 (Lóu) Bond β Ari
17 胃 (Wèi) Stomach 35 Ari
18 昴 (Mǎo) Hairy Head 17 Tau
19 畢 (Bì) Net ε Tau
20 觜 (Zī) Turtle Beak λ Ori
21 參 (Shēn) Three Stars ζ Ori
Vermilion Bird
of the South (Suzaku)

(南方朱雀)
Summer
22 井 (Jǐng) Well μ Gem
23 鬼 (Guǐ) Ghost θ Cnc
24 柳 (Liǔ) Willow δ Hya
25 星 (Xīng) Star α Hya
26 張 (Zhāng) Extended Net υ¹ Hya
27 翼 (Yì) Wings α Crt
28 軫 (Zhěn) Chariot γ Crv

The Southern Asterisms (近南極星區)

The sky around the south celestial pole was unknown to ancient Chinese. Therefore, it was not included in the Three Enclosures and Twenty-Eight Mansions system. However, by the end of the Ming Dynasty, Xu Guangqi introduced another 23 asterisms based on the knowledge of Hellenistic star charts.[5] These asterisms were since incorporated into the traditional Chinese star maps.

The asterisms are :

English name Chinese name Number of stars Hellenistic Constellation
Cross 十字架 4 Crux
Horse’s Tail 馬尾 3 Centaurus
Horse’s Abdomen 馬腹 3 Centaurus
Bee 蜜蜂 4 Musca
Triangle 三角形 3 Triangulum Australe
Exotic Bird 異雀 9 Apus / Octans
Peacock 孔雀 11 Pavo
Persia 波斯 11 Indus / Telescopium
Snake’s Tail 蛇尾 4 Octans / Hydrus
Snake’s Abdomen 蛇腹 4 Hydrus
Snake’s Head 蛇首 2 Hydrus / Reticulum
Bird’s Beak 鳥喙 7 Tucana
Crane 12 Grus / Tucana
Firebird 火鳥 10 Phoenix / Sculptor
Crooked Running Water 水委Shui Wei 3 Eridanus / Phoenix
White Patched Nearby 附白 2 Hydrus
White Patches Attached 夾白 2 Reticulum / Dorado
Goldfish 金魚 5 Dorado
Sea Rock 海石 5 Carina
Flying Fish 飛魚 6 Volans
Southern Boat 南船 5 Carina
Little Dipper 小斗 9 Chamaeleon

Placement of IAU constellations

The list below gives the placement of IAU constellations within the Chinese system:

Chinese Star Designation

Ancient Chinese astronomers designated names to the visible stars systematically, roughly more than one thousand years before Johann Bayer did it in a similar way. Basically, every star is assigned to an asterism. Then a number is given to the individual stars in this asterism. Therefore, a star is designated as “Asterism name” + “Number”. The numbering of the stars in an asterism, however, is not based on the apparent magnitude of this star, but rather its position in the asterism. (The Bayer system does use this Chinese method sometimes, most notably with the stars in the Big Dipper, which are all about the same magnitude.)

For example, Altair is named 河鼓二 in Chinese. 河鼓 is the name of the asterism (literally the Drum at the River). 二 is the number designation (two). Therefore it literally means “the Second Star of the Drum at the River”. (Bayer might have called Altair “Beta Tympani Flumine” if he had been cataloguing Chinese constellations.)

Some stars also have traditional names, often related to mythology or astrology. For example, Altair is more commonly known as 牛郎星 or 牵牛星 (the Star of the Cowherd) in Chinese, after the mythological story of the Cowherd and Weaver Girl.

These designations are still used in modern Chinese astronomy. All stars for which the traditional names are used in English are routinely translated by their traditional Chinese designations, rather than translations of their catalogue names.

See also

References

  1. ^ Jump up to:a b c d Needham, J. “Astronomy in Ancient and Medieval China“. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series A, Mathematical and Physical Sciences, Vol. 276, No. 1257, The Place of Astronomy in the Ancient World (May 2, 1974), pp. 67–82. Accessed 9 Oct 2012.
  2. Jump up^ 二十八宿的形成与演变
  3. Jump up^ “The Chinese Sky”. International Dunhuang Project. Retrieved 2011-06-25.
  4. Jump up^ Sun, Xiaochun (1997). Helaine Selin, ed. Encyclopaedia of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine in Non-Western Cultures. Kluwer Academic Publishers. p. 517.ISBN 0-7923-4066-3. Retrieved 2011-06-25.
  5. Jump up^ Sun, Xiaochun (1997). Encyclopaedia of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine in Non-Western Cultures. p. 910.

Further reading

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-Eight_Mansions

Traditional Chinese star names

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Traditional Chinese star names (Chinese: , xīng míng) are the names of stars used in ancient Chinese astronomy and astrology, whence they influenced Chinese religion,mythology, folklore, and the geomantic practice of feng shui. The names appear extensively in Chinese culture, including literature, historiography, and opera. These traditional names sometimes differ from modern names influenced by the official designations of the International Astronomical Union. For those stars whose catalog designation employ English names, Chinese astronomers use traditional Chinese names.

History

Chinese astronomy was advanced in classical times and, being located further south, had noted five times as many stars as were described by Ptolemy.[citation needed] In 1875, Gustav Schlegel made a complete survey of the star names which appeared in ancient works. His Uranographie Chinoise correlated 760 star names with those used in western astronomy.[1]

Star names and their constellations

Ancient Chinese astronomers designated names to the visible stars systematically, roughly more than a thousand years[citation needed] before Johann Bayer did it in a similar way. Basically, every star is assigned to an asterism. Then a number is given to the individual stars in this asterism. Therefore, a star is designated as “Asterism name” + “Number”. The numbering of the stars is not based on the apparent magnitude of this star, but rather its position in the asterism and this numbering sometimes changed over the course of Chinese history.

For example, Altair is named 河鼓 (Hégǔ Èr) in Chinese. 河鼓He Gu is the name of the asterism (lit.Drum at the River“). 二 is the number designation (“two”). Therefore, it literally means “the second star in the Drum at the River”. (Bayer might have called Altair “Beta Tympani Flumine” if he had been cataloguing Chinese constellations.)

Some stars also have traditional names, often related to mythology. For example, Altair is more commonly known in China as 牛郎 (Niúlángxīng) or 牵牛 (Qiānniúxīng) afterNiulang, the cowherd who fell in love with the daughter of the Jade Emperor. The one night a year they can be together, the Night of Sevens, was thought to exhibit a dimming of the Milky Way, removing the barrier between Altair and Vega.

If the same name has been used multiple times for unrelated objects, a red question mark ? is appended to the name until the ambiguity can be resolved.

Traditional Chinese Simplified Chinese Romanization Translation Western name Comments
Biē Yī Softshell Turtle I α Telescopii Link 1, 2
飛魚 飞鱼 Fēiyú Yī Flying Fish I α Volantis Link
飛魚 飞鱼 Fēiyú Èr Flying Fish II γ² Volantis
飛魚 飞鱼 Fēiyú Sān Flying Fish III β Volantis
飛魚 飞鱼 Fēiyú Sì Flying Fish IV κ¹ Volantis
飛魚 飞鱼 Fēiyú Wǔ Flying Fish V δ Volantis
飛魚 飞鱼 Fēiyú Liù Flying Fish VI ζ Volantis
鉤鈐 钩钤 Gōuqián Yī ω¹ Scorpii Also known as the West Gouqian Star (鉤鈐西, Gōuqián Xī Xīng), Link
鉤鈐 钩钤 Gōuqián Èr ω² Scorpii
Hè Wǔ Crane V γ Tucanae
六甲 Liù Jiǎ Liù Six Jias VI κ Pictoris?
婁宿 娄宿 Lóusù Zēng Liù α Trianguli Also known as Tianhunxinanxing (天溷西南, Tiānhùn Xīnán Xīng)
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Yī Inner Steps I ο Ursae Majoris Link
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Èr Inner Steps II 16 Ursae Majoris
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Sān Inner Steps III 6 Ursae Majoris
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Sì Inner Steps IV 23 Ursae Majoris
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Wǔ Inner Steps V 5 Ursae Majoris
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Liù Inner Steps VI 17 Ursae Majoris
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Zēng Qī π² Ursae Majoris
內階 内阶 Nèi Jiē Zēng Jiǔ π Ursae Majoris
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Yī Beak I α Tucanae
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Èr Beak II δ Tucanae
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Sān Beak III HD 224361
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Sì Beak IV β Tucanae
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Wǔ Beak V ρ Tucanae
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Liù Beak VI ζ Tucanae
鳥喙 鸟喙 Niǎohuì Qī Beak VII ε Tucanae
Qí Zēng Wǔ α Vulpeculae
三角形 Sānjiǎoxíng Yī Triangle I γ Trianguli Australis
三角形 Sānjiǎoxíng Èr Triangle II β Trianguli Australis
三角形? Sānjiǎoxíng Sān? Triangle III α Trianguli Australis Also known as Shaofu (少辅,? Shǎofǔ)
天弁 Tiān Biàn Yī α Scuti Link 1, 2
天弁 Tiān Biàn Èr δ Scuti
天弁 Tiān Biàn Sān ε Scuti
天弁 Tiān Biàn Sì β Scuti
天弁 Tiān Biàn Wǔ η Scuti
大將軍 大将军 Tiān Dàjiāngjūn Jiǔ Celestial General IX β Trianguli Also known as the Great Southern Star (大将军大星, Tiān Dàjiāngjūn Nán Dàxīng) and Fuzhizhongbeixing (鈇鑕中北星,Fūzhìzhōngběixīng)
大將軍 大将军 Tiān Dàjiāngjūn Shí Celestial General X γ Trianguli
大將軍十一 大将军十一 Tiān Dàjiāngjūn Shíyī Celestial General XI δ Trianguli
天牢 Tiān Láo Yī Celestial Prison I ω Ursae Majoris? Link
天牢 Tiān Láo Èr Celestial Prison II 57 Ursae Majoris
天牢 Tiān Láo Sān Celestial Prison III 47 Ursae Majoris
天牢 Tiān Láo Sì Celestial Prison IV 58 Ursae Majoris
天牢 Tiān Láo Wǔ Celestial Prison V 49 Ursae Majoris
天牢 Tiān Láo Liù Celestial Prison VI 56 Ursae Majoris
天相 Tiān Xiàng Yī 17 Sextantis Link 1, 2
天相 Tiān Xiàng Sān ε Sextantis
尾宿 Wěi Sù Yī Tail I μ¹ Scorpii Also known as the West Tail #2 Star (尾宿西第二, Wěisù Xi Dì’er Xīng) and the Weisujuxing (尾宿, Wěisù Jù Xīng); possibly also the Waterwheel Star (s ,t 水車, Shuǐchē Xīng) and Ta-che-xing (s, t , Tàchēxīng); Link 1, 2
尾宿 Wěi Sù Èr Tail II ε Scorpii Also known as the West Tail #1 Star (尾宿西第—, Wěisù Xi Dìyī Xīng)
尾宿 Wěi Sù Sān Tail III ζ¹,² Scorpii
尾宿 Wěi Sù Sì Tail IV η Scorpii
尾宿 Wěi Sù Wǔ Tail V θ Scorpii Also known as Tail #5 Star (尾宿第五,Wěisù Dìwǔ Xīng)
尾宿 Wěi Sù Liù Tail VI ι¹ Scorpii
尾宿 Wěi Sù Qī Tail VII κ Scorpii Also called Tail #7 Star (尾宿第七, Wěisù Dìqī Xīng) and San Shi (, Sān Shī)
尾宿 Wěi Sù Bā Tail VIII λ Scorpii Also called Tail #9 Star (尾宿第九, Wěisù Dìjiǔ Xīng)
尾宿 Wěi Sù Jiǔ Tail IX υ Scorpii Also called Tail #8 Star (尾宿第八, Wěisù Dìbā Xīng) and the Great Xuanyuan Star (轩辕, Xuānyuán Dàxīng)?

See also

References

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