There has been much talk about the dates of the star signs over the last few days so we thought it might be nice to have the correct dates for each zodiac sign on Sydney Observatory’s website. Most of us aren’t aware that each star sign of the zodiac (which means ‘path of the animals’) is determined by the position of the Sun at midday on the day of our birth.
You can’t see your star sign on that day of course but have to wait several months. Many astrology ‘charts’ use classical dates ie data from around the time of Claudius Ptolemy (c. 90-165) [Ptolemy was an astronomer who – only able to observe with the naked eye – believed that the Earth was the centre of the Universe.] We have to take account of the precession of the equinoxes which is a 26 thousand year wobble in the Earth’s rotation that changes the apparent position of the Sun against the background stars. So we’re now almost 10% of the way through the precession from the time of Ptolemy (which means there will be a whole lot more zodiac date changes over the next 24,000 years).
Some may argue the dates below and they are not cut and dry as constellations are simply imaginary star pictures in the night sky with only imaginary boundaries between them. The zodiac constellations are just 13 of the 88 constellations we can see in the night sky; the 13 that appear on the eclliptic, or the imaginary line along which the Sun appears to move through the sky. Yes, you heard me right, 13 – as you’ll see below.
Anyway let the fireworks begin….
In the zodiac date ranges following, the first date range in each case is the date range of the astrological sign according to the relative positions of stars, Sun and Earth today. The dates below in each case are as they would have been in Ptolemy’s time, some 1900 years ago.
21 January – to 16 February
(Was 22 December – 19 January)
17 February to 12 March
(Was 20 January – 18 February)
Currently 13 March to 19 April
(Was 19 February – 20 March)
Currently 20 April to 14 May
(Was 21 March – 19 April)
Currently 15 May to 22 June
(Was 20 April – 20 May)
Currently 22 June to 21 July
(Was 21 May – 20 June)
Currently 22 July to 11 August
(Was 21 June – 22 July)
Currently 11 August to 17 September
(Was 23 July – 22 August)
Currently 18 September to 31 October
(Was 23 August – 22 September)
Currently 1 November to 23 November
(Was 23 September – 22 October)
Currently 24 November to 30 November
(Was 23 October – 21 November)
Currently 1 December to 18 December – Ophiucus is Greek for ‘serpent-holder’ and refers to the physician who, according to Greek mythology, was said to have learnt the ability to heal people from a snake or serpent; he so successfully healed people that the numbers of people turning up in Hades dropped, so the physician was killed by the gods.
(Was not included in Ptolemy’s time)
Currently 19 December to 20 January
(Was 22 November – 21 December)
Geoff and Irma 🙂