Taurus Constellation Facts
Taurus is one of the constellations of the zodiac and belongs to the 88 modern constellations. According to the tropical zodiac the Sun resides in it from April 20 to May 20 while in the sidereal zodiac the Sun is said to transit it from May 16 to June 15. Astrologically, this is associated with the planet Venus.
Taurus is the Latin for “bull”. This is a large constellation in the northern hemisphere which was first described by Ptolemy.
It is placed between Aries to the west and Gemini to the east. In September and October, it is visible along the eastern horizon while in December and January can be observed at night.
Dimensions: 797 square degrees.
Brightness: Quite a bright constellation.
History: This is one of the oldest constellations. In the Early Bronze Age marked the Spring Equinox. Its association with a bull seems to be dating long ago, up to the upper Paleolithic if it were to believe the relation of the constellation with the pictures in the caves at Lascaux. Egyptians considered it the sacred bull that brought the renewal in spring. Greek mythology identified it with Zeus and the bull he transformed into when he abducted Europa.
Stars: The brightest star in this constellation is Aldebaran, the red giant. This is the Arab for “the follower” because it is said to follow the Pleiades. In the northwest side of Taurus there is Supernova Remnant Messier 1, the Crab Nebula. To the west, the two horns of the bull are formed by Beta Tauri and Zeta Tauri.
Galaxies: This constellation has two of the nearest open clusters to Earth, the Pleiades and the Hyades. These are both visible to the naked eye. The Pleiades are said to represent “seven sisters” (the seven stars) from ancient origins.
Meteor showers: The Taurid occurs during November. The beta Taurid occurs in daytime June and July. There are also two more showers, Northern Taurids and Southern Taurids that are active between October 18 and October 29.