Gemini is one of the constellations of the zodiac. It was one of the 48 constellations described by the 2nd century AD astronomer Ptolemy. It is one of the 88 modern constellations today. Its name is Latin for "twins." It is from the twins Castor and Pollux in Greek mythology. Its symbol is (Unicode ♊).
|Symbolism||the Twins, Castor & Pollux|
|Area||514 sq. deg. (30th)|
|Main stars||8, 17|
|Stars with planets||8|
|Stars brighter than 3.00m||4|
|Stars within 10.00 pc (32.62 ly)||4|
|Brightest star||Pollux (β Gem) (1.15m)|
|Visible at latitudes between +90° and −60°.|
Best visible at 21:00 (9 p.m.) during the month of February.
The Geminids are a meteor shower that can be seen best on December 13–14. People watching it see about 100 meteors per hour at most. It one of the richest meteor showers. The Epsilon Geminids peak between October 18 and October 29. They have only been recently confirmed. They overlap with the Orionids. This makes the Epsilon Geminids hard to see. Epsilon Geminid meteors move faster than Orionids.
In Babylonian astronomy, the stars Castor and Pollux were known as the Great Twins (MUL.MASH.TAB.BA.GAL.GAL). The Twins were thought of as minor gods. They were called Meshlamtaea and Lugalirra. These names meant 'The One who has arisen from the Underworld' and the 'Mighty King'. Both names can be understood as titles of Nergal, the major Babylonian god of plague and pestilence. He was king of the Underworld.
- Constellation drawings (often but not always) following "The Stars - A new way to see them", H.A. Rey, 1952–1980, ISBN 0-395-24830-2.
- Ridpath & Tirion 2001, pp. 150-152.
- Jenniskens, Peter (September 2012). "Mapping Meteoroid Orbits: New Meteor Showers Discovered". Sky & Telescope: 22.
- Babylonian Star-lore by Gavin White, Solaria Pubs, 2008, page 125
- Levy, David H. (2005). Deep Sky Objects. Prometheus Books. ISBN 1-59102-361-0.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)
- H. A. Rey, The Stars — A New Way To See Them. Enlarged World-Wide Edition. Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1997. ISBN 0-395-24830-2.
- Ridpath, Ian; Tirion, Wil (2001), Stars and Planets Guide, Princeton University Press, ISBN 0-691-08913-2
- Ian Ridpath and Wil Tirion (2007). Stars and Planets Guide, Collins, London. ISBN 978-0-00-725120-9. Princeton University Press, Princeton. ISBN 978-0-691-13556-4.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to:|
- The Deep Photographic Guide to the Constellations: Gemini
- Astrojan Astronomical Picture Collection: The clickable Gemini
- WikiSky: Gemini constellation
- Ian Ridpath's Star Tales: Gemini
- APOD Pictures of Gemini and Deep Sky Objects:
- A Spring Sky Over Hirsau Abbey
- The Eskimo Nebula from Hubble
- The Medusa Nebula
- Open Star Clusters M35 and NGC 2158
- NGC 2266: Old Cluster in the NGC
- Constellation Guide: Gemini Constellation