Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Pleiades

The Pleiades
There are many tales in mythology about the Pleiades.  The tale that I learned many years ago was that the Pleiades, the seven sisters, are being Pursued by, Orion the Mighty Hunter, and that the Pleiades are being protected by Taurus the Bull.  The Pleiades reside in the shoulder of Taurus.

Here is information taken from Wikipedia on the Pleiades.  "The Pleiades (pron.: /ˈplaɪ.ədiːz/ or /ˈpliːədiːz/; Ancient Greek: Πλειάδες [pleːádes], Modern [pliˈaðes]), companions of Artemis, were the seven daughters of the titan Atlas and the sea-nymph Pleione born on Mount Cyllene. They are the sisters of Calypso, Hyas, the Hyades, and the Hesperides. The Pleiades were nymphs in the train of Artemis, and together with the seven Hyades were called the Atlantides, Dodonides, or Nysiades, nursemaids and teachers to the infant Bacchus.

After Atlas was forced to carry the heavens on his shoulders, Orion began to pursue all of the Pleiades, and Zeus transformed them first into doves, and then into stars to comfort their father. The constellation of Orion is said to still pursue them across the night sky.

One of the most memorable myths involving the Pleiades is the story of how these sisters literally became stars, their catasterism. According to some versions of the tale, all seven sisters committed suicide because they were so saddened by either the fate of their father, Atlas, or the loss of their siblings, the Hyades. In turn Zeus, the ruler of the Greek gods, immortalized the sisters by placing them in the sky. There these seven stars formed the constellation known thereafter as the Pleiades."

This week, besides trying to photograph the comet Pan-STARRS, since the sky was so clear and beautiful, I also photographed the Pleiades, Orion and Taurus.
Pleiades in the shoulder of Taurus being pursued by, Orion
Taken last year, Venus in the Pleiades