I was watching History Channel just now and learnt some rather interesting information. The show was on Nostradamus’ Lost Book and yes the latest end of world deadline is now in 2012. Great...
Anyway, that is not the point I want discussed here. It is one of the points History Channel raised that there are actually 13 Zodiac signs instead of 12. The thirteenth sign was named Ophiuchus – translated to Serpent Man, snake holder or Serpentarius. The sign is represented by a man grabbing a large snake in both of his hands and was located between Scorpio and Sagittarius.
Image taken from: http://www.ianridpath.com/startales/ophiuchus.htm
A star chart of Ophiuchus. From Atlas Coelestis, John Flamsteed, London, 1753. The curved black and white line at the bottom of the drawing is the Ecliptic. Whilst the figure has a slightly different orientation - notably of the head - in comparison to Kepler's drawing, the star positions of the major limbs are very similar. This figure is very close to what the Ancient and Classical Greeks would have seen when they looked for Ophiuchus in the heavens.
According to Wiki, zodiac signs are actually zodiacal constellation which sun passes through them during the course of the year. Even though the sun passed though Ophiuchus, it is not counted as a proper zodiac sign. Some theories were that the number 13 was considered as unlucky in the western world, thus it was not added in. Other official explanation was that Ophiuchus was not in the natural southerly path of the 12 major constellations thus it is awkward to promote it as part of natural universal precession.
This finding somewhat sparkled off my curiosity. If you happened to stump upon this post on the same topic and knew about Ophiuchusian's personalities, do share with me.
Some Astronomers believed the following dates to be the real solar Zodiac Sun Signs instead:
ARIES = APRIL 19 - MAY 13TAURUS = MAY 14 - JUNE 19
GEMINI = JUNE 20 - JULY 20CANCER = JULY 21 - AUG 9
LEO = AUGUST 10 - SEPTEMBER 15
VIRGO = SEPTEMBER 16 - OCTOBER 30
LIBRA = OCTOBER 31 - NOVEMBER 22
SCORPIO = NOVEMBER 23 - NOVEMBER 29
OPHIUCHUS = NOVEMBER 30 - DECEMBER 17
SAGITTARIUS = DECEMBER 18 - JANUARY 18
CAPRICORN = JANUARY 19 - FEBRUARY 15
AQUARIUS = FEBRUARY 16 - MARCH 11
PISCES = MARCH 12 - APRIL 18
Nothing changed for my zodiac sign, still a Virgo... Hmmm...