Jan 20–Feb 18
Latin : Aquarius (Water Bearer)
Greek : Hydrokhoos (Water-Bearer)
A handsome Trojan prince.
He was seized and carried off to heaven by an eagle sent down by Zeus, to become the cup-bearer of the gods.
The eagle and boy were subsequently placedbamongst the stars as the constellations Aquila and Aquarius.
(Hyginus 2.16 & 2.29.)
Feb 19–March 20
Latin : Pisces (the Fishes)
Greek : Ikhthyes (the Fishes)
When the monster Typhon attacked Olympus, the gods fled in a body to the south.
Aphrodite and her son Eros reached the river Eridanus where they threw themselves in the water and hid in the guise of fish.
In memory of the event a pair of fish were set amongst the stars as the constellation
(Hyginus 2.30 on Diognetus Erythraeus.)
March 21–April 19
Latin : Aries (the Ram)
Greek : Krios (the Ram)
A flying, golden-fleeced ram. It was sent by the cloud nymph Nephele to rescue her children,
Phrixus and Helle, who were about to be sacrificed to the gods.
The ram carried them across the seas, but Helle lost her grip and fell.
Upon reaching Colchis the ram shed its golden fleece for Phrixus who hung it in a sacred grove, and flew up to the heavens to take a place amongst the stars as the dimly shining constellation Aries.
(Hyginus 2.20 on Hesiod & Pherecydes & Eratosthenes.)
April 20–May 20
Latin : Taurus (the Bull)
Greek : Tauros (the Bull)
The Argive princess Io was loved by Zeus, who transformed her into a cow to hide her from the
jealous gaze of his wife Hera.
She was nevertheless recognised by the goddess who set a maddening gladfly to torment her that drive her wandering to Egypt.
There Io was restored to human form and gave birth to her son Epaphos. As a memorial of her trials, Io was set amongst the stars as the constellation "Taurus."
May 21–June 21
Latin : Gemini (the Twins)
Greek : Didymoi (the Twins)
Twin sons of Zeus, named Castor and Polydeuces. The pair were famed horsemen who were transferred to the heavens at death to form the constellation Gemini. The Dioscuri came to the rescue of sailors in distress.
June 22–July 22
Latin : Cancer (the Crab)
Greek : Karkinos (the Crab)
A crab of the Lernaean swamp which assisted Hydra in her battle with Heracles.
The hero crushed it beneath his heel, and also despatched the serpent, but as a reward for their service Hera placed the pair amongst the stars in the form of the constellations Cancer and Hydra.
July 23–Aug 22
Latin : Leo (the Lion)
Greek : Leon (the Lion)
A lion whose hide was impervious to weapons which terrorized the countryside of Nemea. When Heracles was commanded to destroy it was one of his twelve labours, he throttled the beast to death with his bare hands.
The lion was then placed by Hera amongst the stars as the constellation Leo.
Aug 23–Sept 22
Latin : Virgo (the Virgin)
Greek : Parthenos (the Virgin)
The maiden goddess of justice, who departed from the earth at the start of the Brazen Age of Man. She was given a place amongst the stars as the winged constellation Virgo, with her scales set nearby in the form of Libra.
(Hyginus 2.25 on Hesiod & Aratus, Aratus 96.)
Sept 23–Oct 23
Latin : Libra (the Scales)
Greek : Zyygos (the Scales) or Khêlai (the Claws)
The scales of Astraea, the goddess of justice, were placed beside her in the heavens as the constellation Libra. Astraea herself was Virgo.
The scales of Tyche, goddess of fortune, were set amongst the stars as the constellation Libra. Tyche herself was one of the goddesses identified as Virgo.
Oct 24–Nov 21
Latin : Scorpio (the Scorpion)
Greek : Skorpios (the Scorpion)
A scorpion sent forth by the earth-goddess Gaea to kill Orion when the giant boasted that he would slay all the animals of the earth.
The pair were placed amongst the stars as the constellations Scorpio and Orion.
The ancients sometimes combined a pair of constellations to create the the scorpion, with Libra forming the claws.
(Hyginus 2.26, Aratus 634.)
Nov 22–Dec 21
Latin : Sagittarius (the Archer)
Greek : Toxeutês (the Archer)
The wise centaur Chiron was placed amongst the stars as the constellation Saggitarius or Centaurus, when he surrendered his immortality after being poisoned by an arrow of Heracles.
A horse-legged, satyr hunter who was a companion of the Muses on Mount Helicon. As a reward for his zeal he was placed amongst the stars as the constellation Saggitarius. His victory wreath was further set as a circle of stars at his feet.
(Hyginus 2.27 on Sositheus.)
Dec 22–Jan 19
Latin : Capricorn (the Goat Horn)
Greek : Aigokerôs (the Goat Horn)
When the monster Typhon attacked Olympus, the gods fled in a body to Egypt and hid themselves away in the form of animals.
The god Pan transformed himself into a goat-fish and hid dived into a river.
Later after Zeus had been disabled by the giant, Aegipan recovered his stolen sinews and so restored him.
For this service he was awarded with a place amongst the stars as the constellation Capricorn.