Talk:The Sky at Night

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There are 14 Zodiac signs - you are missing the Fool. See Martin's Alusian Astrology article.

I've put the Zodiac signs in an order which has nice behavioural aspects w.r.t seasons, with the Sun in the appropriate type of sign for the season, while retaining the order that the planets are linked to the cycle of the Zodiac. Hopefully you can tie this in.

I'm not sure how much naked-eye astrology they got up to in the 14/1500's, but I think it was an awful lot - they had tables for when various planets would cross each other or the moon, when they would enter which Zodiac signs, etc., so you can probably make this quite detailed. I've got a forthcoming chapter on 32 useful navigational stars (for the northern Hemisphere), which hopefully will tie into this as well - it won't get anywhere until at least January, however. I've been meaning to read more on John Dee, who was a leading astrologer/ astronomer/ mathematician/ angel summoner/theoretical navigator in Elizabethean times

Good Luck. Andreww 15:50, 3 Dec 2007 (NZDT)


By the way, the Wains are from the stars of Charles Waine, which was another name for the Pointers. This, plus the associated stars being called the Guards, made me think of wagons, hence Wains. I was thinking the Wains and their Guards form a Constellation called the Wagon, or similar; not sure how/if the North Star fits into the Constellation. Just free-associating at this point.

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Not a lot in the 14th/1500's actually although it was in the early 1500s that Copernicus was around. However the Church had a very strong influence and his new heliocentric theory of the solar system wasn't published until his death in 1543. The person who taught him was a Polish astronomer called Albert Brudzewski (1445 - 1497). According to Wikipedia he only taught ab out Aristotle. Proper maps of the sky weren't developed until later although I suspect that many of the well known bright stars and major groupings were known of by the educated person. John Dee lived from 1527 to 1609 btw.

On Alusia, the Renaissance has come early and adventurers having contact with other societies would be bringing back new information all the time which would stimulate knowledge (imo) so I suspect studies of the sky would be more advanced than medieval times, maybe up to the level of Brahe and Kepler. Whether or not the telescopes that were developed at that time were available on Alusia is still a matter of debate. Currently I'm assuming not.

--Keith 23:53, 3 Dec 2007 (NZDT)

Sirius etc.

I'm hoping to avoid using real world names for stars and constellations as I am presuming the Alusian sky is quite different than ours. However, I like the name Seirius and would like to use it. It may also be known as Seir's Star and in a constellation which is significant to the worshippers of Seir. Other Powers etc, may also have their own named objects. What do others think?

--Keith 20:39, 31 Jan 2008 (NZDT)

Makes sense. I'm looking to name the 32 (or so) brightest stars between the Tropics (+/-23.5 degrees) for a Navigational section. Do you have a preferred naming style? We could go with Lion's heart, Raven's wing, Serpent's head, etc. based on what part of the constellation they belong to, or some pseudo-greek/latin elvish names, or whatever. Given that (almost?) no player or GM will actually need to know the stars in game, I think flavour is more important than anything else. Thoughts? --Andreww 19:31, 1 Feb 2008 (NZDT)

Works for me. I'd go along with both naming styles. After all in reality there are both the Alpha, Beta etc designations which are in common use and a whole pack of proper names, some of which are used, others lost to antiquity. So, there would be a set of names related to the constellation and also proper names for the stars themselves. Even those change depending which civilisation got to do the naming.

--Keith 08:27, 2 Feb 2008 (NZDT)


I meant a Spindle Distaff, not an Awl (I think) - brain freeze. The names are completely mutable, so please feel free to change the star names if they make no sense! Thanks

--Andreww 12:16, 3 Oct 2008 (NZST)