What are Constellations?

By:Karla Cruz

What are Constellations?

Constellations are a group of stars that form a pattern in the night sky. Constellations are usually named after mythological creatures. There are a total of 88 constellations that still exist today. Many people confuse constellations with astersims. Asterisms are recognizable patterns of the stars that are not officially designated constellations. Constellations may be formed by asterisms.

What are Constellations used for?

The first use for constellations was probably religious. Many cultures thought that the stars told stories so they recognized the patterns, gave them names and told stories about them. The names of the constellations, came from the Greeks. Another use for constellations was for agricultural purposes. Before there were proper calenders, farmers recognized that certain stars were during a good harvesting time. The third is for navigation. You can locate stars and know which direction your going in. Today they are used to group stars and help name them.

Types of Constellations

There are 88 modern constellations that still exist today. There are many other constellations that are not recognized today as constellations. There are also Chinese constellations.

Sources

  • "What Are Constellations?" What Are Constellations? N.p., n.d. Web. 01 June 2015.
  • "The Constellations." The Constellations. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2015.
  • "» Star Constellations." Star Constellations. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2015.
  • "What Are Constellations Used For? (Intermediate) - Curious About Astronomy? Ask an Astronomer." What Are Constellations Used For? (Intermediate) - Curious About Astronomy? Ask an Astronomer. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 June 2015.
  • "The Constellations." The Constellations. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 June 2015.