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Answered 2011-01-24 02:58:07

There is an imaginary band in the sky called the Plane of the Ecliptic. The planets we can see from earth, never wander above or below that band of sky - so the planets are always in one of the other of the constellations that lie in that band. We call those particular 12 (or 13) constellations the "constellations of the Zodiac".


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They are all just as common, some are more famous like Leo, Aquarius and other constellations that are on the Zodiac.

Not in reality. The only thing that separates them from other constellations is that they appear on the ecliptic, the apparent path of the Sun and planets across the sky.

The Chinese zodiac is based on a twelve year cycle. The year is lunar based, starting on the second new moon after the winter solstice. The western zodiac and the Amerind earth magic zodiac are based on a twelve month cycle.

Only the twelve constellations of the Zodiac would be "zodiacal". There are hundreds of OTHER constellations; pick any one of those. Probably the two best known "non-zodiacal" constellations would be the Big Dipper and Orion. Cassiopeia might be third on this list.

The distance between the Earth and the Moon... or for that matter the Earth and any other planet in the Solar System... is so small compared to the distance to even the nearest stars that there is no appreciable difference in the constellations.

In astronomy Ophiuchus is one of 13 constellations that cross the ecliptic. Ophiuchus has sometimes been considered the 13th sign of the zodiac because the Sun can be seen to pass through the boundary of the constellation November 30 to December 18, according to the International Astronomical Union. The constellations and the astrological zodiac have only a loose association with each other and reality. The zodiac signs in astrology are a means of dividing the ecliptic into 12 equal parts of 30° each, a quadrant encompassing about the distance the Sun travels in a month. Due to the procession of the equinoxes, the tropical zodiac is less accurate astronomically than the sidereal zodiac, which uses the exact placements of the planets in constellations. But neither really encompasses Ophiuchus as a zodiac sign.

No. All circumpolar constellations are found near the celestial poles. Because of their proximity to the poles, they never disappear from view. Sagittarius is on the ecliptic and thus (like all other zodiac constellations) not close enough to the poles to render it circumpolar.

The zodiac is the "belt" around the sky within which the sun is always located. The moon and planets also always remain in the zodiac or close to it. That's the reason that this part of the sky was long thought to have some special significance with regard to life on earth.

In astronomy the zodiac signs are the 13 constellations found on the ecliptic, the apparent path of the Sun and other planets in the night sky. The zodiac can be used astronomically to study the motion of the Earth about the Sun; particularly giving the observer a picture of the Earth's slow wobble on its axis and to study its orbit.

Circumpolar stars/constellations are stars/constellations that always stay in the sky; they never rise or set.

The Ecliptic describes our view of the stars in the sky that (approximately) traces out the apparent position of our Sun against distant stars over each year. The area known as the Zodiac is a band about 18 degrees wide centered on the Ecliptic. All constellations are fanciful human interpretations of patterns of stars and galaxies in the night sky. Zodiac constellations are no different than other constellations except that they are patterns in that 18 degree band in the sky. As the Earth moves around the Sun in the plane of the Ecliptic so do the other planets, all at slightly different angles to the plane and with different orbital times so that appear to take the same approximate path as the Sun and our Moon. As the background star patterns change only over millions of years the changing position of the Sun, Moon and planets seem to wander aimlessly about the Zodiac band. The study of these wanderers (Greek planome: I wander) was the forerunner of modern Astronomy and the pseudoscience of Astrology.

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The word "asterism" is given to a grouping of stars that is not on the "official" list of 88 constellations maintained by the International Astronomical Union. Also - an asterism is PART of a constellation - like Orion's Belt, The Big Dipper, or a pattern made from the stars of other constellations, like The Summer Triangle, etc.

They are totally invisible. I cannot see any of them listed. <><><><><> The 12 constellations of the zodiac, which is what I think the question is alluding to, are unique in that they lie on the plane of the ecliptic, i.e. on the apparent path of the Sun with respect to the Earth, as we go through our yearly orbit around the Sun.

A person can not have two Sun signs, but they do have other planetary placements at the time of their birth. All the planets, Sun and Moon are located in various Zodiac constellations on the birth day and that is why Astrologers do not look at just the Sun sign for guidance in a person's astrological chart.

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The sky has been divided into 88 official constellations used in modern astronomy, covering both hemispheres. These include the 12 traditional signs of the zodiac.Any other grouping of stars (such as the northern hemisphere's Summer Triangle) is more correctly referred to as an asterism.

It borders seven other constellations. They are Auriga, Perseus, Aries, Cetus, Eridanus, Orion and Gemini.

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AnswerSome say the significance was that there were traditionally twelve tribes of Israel Some say the significance was that there are twelve constellations in the zodiac. Some say both, one leading to the other.

Yes, Capricorn borders these other constellations: Aquarius Aquila Sagittarius Microscopium Piscis Austrinus

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There are 88 official "constellations" recognized by the International Astronomical Union. These official constellations include the 12 Zodiac constellations and such well-known ones like Ursa Major or Orion. Any named grouping of stars other than the "official" 88 are called "asterisms". For example, the Big Dipper is not an official constellation; instead, it is an asterism. Asterisms may be parts of constellations, or may include stars from two or more constellations. The Big Dipper is a part of the larger constellation of Ursa Major, while "Orion's Belt" is an asterism, the middle part of the constellation of Orion.

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