n MNASSA : Monthly Notes of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - Sky delights : the sky's strong man

Volume 75, Issue 5-6
  • ISSN : 0024-8266



Hercules was one of the oldest constellations to be named and portrays the mythology of the past in a very special way. The "strong man" was seen as a hero crouching on one knee, bow and arrow in hand. The constellation Sagita was probably seen as the arrow shot off by him. Before the Common Era the constellation was simply called The Kneeler, but the real name ascribed to the strong man in antiquity was Ninurta, the War God. The constellation is the fifth largest of the 88 constellations inhabiting the starry skies.

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