The Seven Sisters
A source of many star myths, the Pleiades’ star constellation is visible overhead from just about anywhere between the North and South Poles. Located in Taurus the Bull constellation, it is a V-shaped constellation just to the right of the Orion Belt.
In the Eastern sky, the Pleiades (a cluster of seven stars) rises before the Aldebaran – a star that follows the Pleiades - and sets in the Western sky before the Aldebaran. In the Northern Hemisphere, the Pleiades have been associated with the winter. In fact, November has often been referred to as the month of the Seven Sisters since they are visible from dusk to dawn.
There are many legends associated with this constellation.
Here are a few:
- Early use of the constellation as a calendar. In Ancient Greece, the sighting of this cluster meant it was time to cast out and sail. Elsewhere along the Mediterranean Sea the early morning appearance indicated it was time to navigate a seafaring vessel.
- Druid rituals that helped to spawn Halloween coincided with the midnight sightings of the stars. For Mexican culture, the constellation is also known as the seed stars because the stars' disappearance in the spring signifies the planting season.