The Mythology of the Night Sky

An Amateur Astronomer's Guide to the Ancient Greek and Roman Legends

  • David E.¬†Falkner

Part of the Patrick Moore's Practical Astronomy Series book series (PATRICKMOORE)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. David E. Falkner
    Pages 9-17
  3. David E. Falkner
    Pages 19-56
  4. David E. Falkner
    Pages 57-67
  5. David E. Falkner
    Pages 69-94
  6. David E. Falkner
    Pages 95-125
  7. David E. Falkner
    Pages 127-137
  8. David E. Falkner
    Pages 139-162
  9. David E. Falkner
    Pages 163-168
  10. David E. Falkner
    Pages 169-210
  11. Back Matter
    Pages 211-238

About this book


Every amateur astronomer can easily recognize most of the constellations, but how many of us know the story behind them? What myths did the Ancient Greeks weave around the mighty hunter Orion that places him so prominently in the sky? Did you know that this mythical being was said to have been killed by Diana, herself a hunter, while he was exhausted by his fight with Scorpius? The constellation of Scorpius, the giant scorpion, is dominated by the red supergiant Antares and hangs in the sky opposite Orion. Yet there is no constellation of Diana to be found!

The Mythology of the Night Sky strikes a balance between backyard astronomy and ancient mythology. Organized by seasons, this book describes Ptolemy's 48 constellations with location and description in detail, while also telling the mythological tales in full. Along with the named constellations, this title also incorporates the lore behind the christening of the planets and their satellites. Readers discover the importance of the ancient characters, why they were immortalized in the sky, how several constellations are all woven into the same story and how satellite names are related to their planets.


Constellations of the night sky Greco-Roman constellation myths Greek constellation names Greek mythology sky Night sky mythology Planet names Planetary mythologies and legends Roman constellation myths Stories of the constellations Summer constellations Winter constellations

Authors and affiliations

  • David E.¬†Falkner
    • 1
  1. 1.BlaineUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Physics and Astronomy
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4614-0136-0
  • Online ISBN 978-1-4614-0137-7
  • Series Print ISSN 1431-9756
  • Buy this book on publisher's site