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Fri, 16 Aug


Institute of Astronomy

Pictures in the Sky

The Origin and History of the Constellations presented by Ian Ridpath FRAS

Pictures in the Sky
Pictures in the Sky

Time & Location

16 Aug 2024, 20:00 – 21:30

Institute of Astronomy, Madingley Rd, Cambridge CB3 0HA, UK

About The Event

In the days before writing, storytellers used the sky as a picture book to illustrate their tales of gods, mythical heroes and fabulous beasts. Those pictures among the stars were the origin of our system of constellations. Today, the entire sky is divided into 88 constellations of varying shapes and sizes. This talk, which includes illustrations from some of the world’s greatest star atlases, will trace the origin of the constellation system back to Greek times and explain who filled in the gaps between the ancient Greek figures, who decided on the official boundaries between constellations, and how the names of certain stars came about.

Our speaker, Ian Ridpath has been interested in astronomy and space since childhood, and has been a full-time writer, editor, broadcaster, and lecturer on the subject since 1972.

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