List of the Constellations

Constellation Mythological Association First Appeared Genitive Form Brightest Star
Constellation Mythological Association First Appeared Genitive Form Brightest Star
Andromeda The Princess Andromeda; in Greek mythology, the daughter of Cepheus and Cassiopeia and husband of Perseus Ancient Andromedae Alpheratz
Antlia The air pump; originally the 'pneumatic machine' 1756 (Lacaille) Antliae
Apus The bird of paradise 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Apodis
Aquarius The water bearer; in Greek mythology, Ganymede, wine-waiter to the Gods and lover of Zeus Ancient Aquarii Sadalsud
Aquila The eagle; in Greek mythology, the bird of Zeus and the retriever of thunderbolts Ancient Aquilae Altair
Ara The altar; in Greek mythology, used by the Gods to vow allegiance before their battle with the Titans Ancient Arae
Aries The ram; in Greek mythology, whose golden fleece was recovered by Jason and the Argonauts Ancient Arietis Hamal
Auriga The charioteer; in Greek mythology, Erichthonius, son of Vulcan, who was the first person to attach four horses to a chariot Ancient Aurigae Capella
Bootes The herdsman; in Greek mythology, Arcas, son of Zeus by Callisto Ancient Bootis Arcturus
Caelum The chisel 1756 (Lacaille) Caeli
Camelopardalis The giraffe 1612 (Plancius) Camelopardalis
Cancer The crab; in Greek mythology, an attacker of Hercules Ancient Cancri Tarf
Canes Venatici The hunting dogs; held by the herdsman Bootes 1687 (Hevelius) Canum Venaticorum Cor Caroli
Canis Major The greater dog; in Greek mythology, guard dog of Orion and pursuer of the hare Lepus Ancient Canis Majoris Sirius
Canis Minor The lesser dog; in Greek mythology, Orion's second dog Ancient Canis Minoris Procyon
Capricornus The sea goat; in Greek mythology, associated with Pan, god of the countryside Ancient Capricorni Deneb Algiedi
Carina The keel; a sub-division of the ancient constellation Argo; in Greek mythology, the ship of the Argonauts 1756 (Lacaille) Carinae Canopus
Cassiopeia Queen Cassiopeia; in Greek mythology, wife of Cepheus and mother of Andromeda Ancient Cassiopeiae Shedir
Centaurus The Centaur, half man and half horse; in Greek mythology, the wise centaur Chiron Ancient Centauri
Cepheus King Cepheus of Ethiopeia; in Greek mythology, the king of Ethiopia, descended from Zeus and Io Ancient Cephei Alderamin
Cetus The sea monster; in Greek mythology, attacker of Cepheus's territory and of Andromeda, slain by Perseus Ancient Ceti Deneb Kaitos
Chamaeleon The chameleon 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Chamaeleontis
Circinus The pair of dividing compasses 1756 (Lacaille) Circini
Columba The dove; in Biblical history, the dove of Noah 1592 (Plancius) Columbae Phact
Coma Berenices The hair of Queen Berenice of Egypt; shaved in the third century BC in gratitude for military victory 1536 (Vopel) Comae Berenices
Corona Australis The southern crown; known to the Greeks as a wreath Ancient Coronae Australis Alphekka Meridiana
Corona Borealis The northern crown; in Greek mythology, worn by the Princess Ariadne on her wedding day Ancient Coronae Borealis Alphecca
Corvus The crow; in Greek mythology, sent by Apollo in search of water Ancient Corvi Gienah
Crater The cup; in Greek mythology, clutched by the crow Crater in its search for water Ancient Crateris Labrum
Crux The southern cross 1598 (Plancius) Crucis Acrux
Cygnus The swan; in Greek mythology, Zeus in disguise Ancient Cygni Deneb
Delphinus The dolphin; in Greek mythology, the messenger of Poseidon Ancient Delphini Rotanev
Dorado The goldfish 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Doradus
Draco The dragon; in Greek mythology, Ladon, guard of the tree on which golden apples grew, slain by Hercules Ancient Draconis Eltamin
Equuleus The little horse; without mythological association Ancient (Ptolomy) Equulei Kitalpha
Eridanus The mythical river Eridanus; associated variously with the Nile or Po Ancient Eridani Achernar
Fornax The furnace; originally a chemist's distillation furnace 1756 (Lacaille) Fornacis
Gemini The twins Castor and Pollux; Pollux fathered by Zeus and Castor by Tyndareus Ancient Geminorum Pollux
Grus The crane 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Gruis Alnair
Hercules Hercules; a hero of Greek mythology Ancient Herculis Kornephoros
Horologium The pendulum clock 1756 (Lacaille) Horologii
Hydra The water snake; in Greek mythology, slain by Hercules Ancient Hydrae Alphard
Hydrus The lesser water snake 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Hydri
Indus The Indian 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Indi
Lacerta The lizard 1690 (Hevelius) Lacertae
Leo The lion; in Greek mythology, slain by Hercules Ancient Leonis Regulus
Leo Minor The lion cub 1687 (Hevelius) Leonis Minoris Praecipua
Lepus The hare; in Greek mythology, chased by Orion and his dogs Ancient Leporis Arneb
Libra The balance; the constellation in which the Sun lies when day and night have equal length at the September equinox Ancient (Roman) Librae Zubeneshamali
Lupus The wolf; without mythological association Ancient Lupi
Lynx The lynx 1687 (Hevelius) Lyncis Elvashak
Lyra The lyre; in Greek mythology, played by Orpheus Ancient Lyrae Vega
Mensa Table Mountain, South Africa; Lacaille's observing site 1756 (Lacaille) Mensae
Microscopium The microscope 1756 (Lacaille) Microscopii
Monoceros The unicorn; from the Old Testament 1612 (Monoceros) Monocerotis
Musca The fly 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Muscae
Norma The set square 1756 (Lacaille) Normae
Octans The octant; a navigational instrument invented in the 1730 1756 (Lacaille) Octantis
Ophiuchus The serpent bearer; in Greek mythology, Asclepius, the god of medicine; in the sky, holding the snake Serpens Ancient Ophiuchi Ras Alhague
Orion The hunter; to the Sumerians, Gilgamesh Ancient Orionis Rigel
Pavo The peacock 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Pavonis
Pegasus The winged horse; in Greek mythology, used by Zeus to carry thunder and lightning Ancient Pegasi Enif
Perseus Perseus; in Greek mythology, the husband of Andromeda and slayer of Medusa the Gorgon Ancient Persei Mirfak
Phoenix The phoenix 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Phoenicis Ankaa
Pictor The painter's easel 1756 (Lacaille) Pictoris
Pisces Two fishes, swimming in opposite directions with their tails connected by a cord Ancient Piscium Alpherg
Piscis Austrinus The southern fish; the parent of the two fish of pisces Ancient Piscis Austrini Fomalhaut
Puppis The poop deck of the Argo Navis; a sub-division of the ancient constellation Argo; in Greek mythology, the ship of the Argonauts 1756 (Lacaille) Puppis Naos
Pyxis The compass 1756 (Lacaille) Pyxidis
Reticulum The net; commemorating the wires of the cross-hair in Lacaille's telescope 1756 (Lacaille) Reticuli
Sagitta The arrow; in Greek mythology, perhaps the arrow that Apollo used to kill the Cyclopes Ancient Sagittae
Sagittarius The archer; drawn as a centaur – half man, half horse Ancient Sagittarii Kaus Australis
Scorpius The scorpion; in Greek mythology, which stung the hunter Orion to death Ancient Scorpii Antares
Sculptor The sculptor; originally, the sculptor's studio 1756 (Lacaille) Sculptoris
Scutum The shield; in honour of King John III Sobieski of Poland, and the only politically inspired constellation still in use 1684 (Hevelius) Scuti
Serpens Caput The serpent's head; held by Ophiuchus and part of the same constellation as Serpens Cauda Ancient Serpentis Caput
Serpens Cauda The serpent's tail; held by Ophiuchus and part of the same constellation as Serpens Caput Ancient Serpentis Cauda
Sextans The sextant; used by Hevelius to measure star positions 1687 (Hevelius) Sextantis
Taurus The bull; in Greek mythology, Zeus in disguise Ancient Tauri Aldebaran
Telescopium The telescope; an aerial telescope as used by Cassini at the Paris Observatory 1756 (Lacaille) Telescopii
Triangulum The triangle; appearing similar to a capital delta in the Greek alphabet Ancient Trianguli
Triangulum Australe The southern triangle 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Trianguli Australe Atria
Tucana The toucan 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Tucanae
Ursa Major The great bear; in Greek mythology, Callisto, lover of Zeus Ancient Ursae Majoris Alioth
Ursa Minor The lesser bear; in Greek mythology, one of the nymphs that nursed Zeus as an infant Ancient Ursae Minoris Polaris
Vela The sail; a sub-division of the ancient constellation Argo; in Greek mythology, the ship of the Argonauts 1756 (Lacaille) Velorum Regor
Virgo The virgin; in Greek mythology, goddess of justice Ancient Virginis Spica
Volans The flying fish; of the family Exocoetidae 1598 (Keyser & de Houtman) Volantis
Vulpecula The fox 1687 (Hevelius) Vulpeculae Anser




Color scheme