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The Constellation
Capricornus

The Constellation CapricornusCapricornus is the second least visible constellation in the sky. The constellation of Cancer takes first place. 

Capricornus History

About 2,000 years ago The Sun reached its most southern position in the sky. It passed in front of this constellation south of the celestial equator. This became known as the Winter Solstice and the position became known as the Tropic of Capricorn. This term is still used today, even though, because of the continuing procession of the equinoxes, The Sun is no longer in this constellation in midwinter. The Winter Solstice occurs about December 21st, which is very close to the beginning of the astrological period known as Capricorn, on or about December 22nd.

The constellation of Capricornus lies in the large region of the sky known as the “ Sky Sea.” This section of the sky also contains other “watery" constellations as Aquarius and Pisces.

Capricornus Mythology

Zodiac Sign of CapricornThe constellation of Capricornus is probably the oldest constellation in the Zodiac with a great deal of mythology connected to these stars.

Usually this group of stars is shown as a “sea goat” with the forequarters of a goat and the tail of a fish. The origins of a goat or a goat-fish figure may have been pre-historic. Carvings of a goat and goat-fish have been found on Babylonian tablets dating back as far as 3,000 years.

According to the ancients, the constellation of Capricornus was the Gate of the Gods. The souls of the mortals passed through this portal after they died.

One myth identifies this constellation with Amalthea, the goat that suckled Zeus when he was an infant.

Another myth associates Capricornus with Pan, the lusty god, who tried to get away from the monster Typhon. To escape Typhon, the gods turned themselves into animals. But Pan panicked (thus the origin of the word). As he leapt into the river feet-first, half of him became a fish tail and the other half remained a goat.

The constellation of Capricornus is also associated with ancient Sumeria and the god called Ea. Ea is also known as Oannes. This god is credited with bringing science and culture from the sea to mankind.

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