Tag Archives: Polaris

Stars Wheel in Purple

Stars wheel in purple, yours is not so rare
as Hesperus, nor yet so great a star
as bright Aldebaran or Sirius,
nor yet the stained and brilliant one of War;

stars turn in purple, glorious to the sight;
yours is not gracious as the Pleiads are
nor as Orion’s sapphires, luminous;

yet disenchanted, cold, imperious face,
when all the others blighted, reel and fall,
your star, steel-set, keeps lone and frigid tryst
to freighted ships, baffled in wind and blast.

H.D. (Hilda Doolittle)

If you like the image at the top, click here.

Polaris: location, location, location

The North Star is not a particularly bright star; it doesn’t make the top 20. It’s no. 45, actually. What’s even more disturbing is that it hasn’t always been the pole star, and it will eventually move out of position again. The Earth’s orbit has a wobble in it, and thus the north pole rolls around a little over the course of the millennia.

Imagine the poles as the ends of the dowel sticking out of a round top, and you can imagine the north end wobbling around as the top rolls. This is a bit of a blow to myths about the north star, because they tend to stress the constancy and centrality of Polaris. Continue reading

Venus, from Wikimedia

Sirona: the star goddess

Like Belisama, Solimara and Sulis, Sirona’s cult centers on healing water, whether hot springs, baths or wells. Her name, however, means something like “Great Star”, which would make her a star-goddess, rather than a solar one. She is linked to several gods, including the Roman sun-god Apollo, as well as the gods Grannus and Atesmertius.

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