Represented in an attitude of rage, Taurus appears ready to plunge into Orion the hunter. Orion seems to invite the battle by his antagonistic stance of attack. Only the head and shoulders of Taurus are depicted by the stars.
The constellation Taurus contains the Pleiades, a bright grouping of stars representing the seven sisters of Greek mythology, the daughters of Atlas. It also contains Hyades, a cluster of twenty-four stars, visible to the naked eye, marking the head of the bull.
The Crab Nebula, or M-1, is located in the northern part of Taurus. It is a remnant of a supernova which exploded in 1054 AD.
There are two meteor showers associated with the constellation Taurus. The Taurids meteor shower peaks in November. The Beta Taurids peak in June and July.
Nearest constellations to Taurus are Aries, Auriga, Cetus, Eridanus, Gemini, Orion and Perseus.
Right Ascension: 04:28
Diameter (°): 19
Area (square °): 797
Opposition: Dec 01
Size Rank: 17th
Brightness Rank: 10th
Major stars in Taurus
Aldebaran – α Tauri (Alpha Tauri)
Elnath – β Tauri (Beta Tauri)
ζ Tauri (Zeta Tauri)
θ Tauri (Theta Tauri)
Pectus Tauri – λ Tauri (Lambda Tauri)
Ain (Oculus Borealis) – ε Tauri (Epsilon Tauri)
Hyadum I – γ Tauri (Gamma Tauri)
Ushakaron – ξ Tauri (Xi Tauri)
δ Tauri (Delta Tauri)
υ Tauri (Upsilon Tauri)
ρ Tauri (Rho Tauri)
ο Tauri (Omicron Tauri)
Alcyone – η Tauri (Eta Tauri)
Atlas – 27 Tauri
Electra – 17 Tauri
Maia – 20 Tauri
Merope – 23 Tauri
Taygeta – 19 Tauri
Pleione – 28 Tauri (BU Tauri)
Celaeno – 16 Tauri
Asterope – 21 and 22 Tauri
Deep Sky Objects in Taurus
Crab Nebula – Messier 1 (M1, NGC 1952)
The Pleiades (Seven Sisters) – Messier 45
The Hyades Cluster (Caldwell 41, Melotte 25, Collinder 50)
Hind’s Variable Nebula – NGC 1555
NGC 1410 and NGC 1409
Crystal Ball Nebula – NGC 1514
Merope Nebula (Tempel’s Nebula) – NGC 1435
Mythology of the Constellation Taurus
According to Greek mythology, this is the animal which carried Europa over the seas to the area which now bears her name. The Daughter of Agenor and princess of Phoenicia, Europa was so beautiful that Jupiter became enamored of her.
Jupiter assumed the shape of the snow-white bull and mingled with the herds of Agenor while Europa and her female attendants were gathering flowers in the meadows. Europa caressed the beautiful animal and at last had the courage to sit on his back. Taking advantage of the situation, Jupiter safely crossed the sea with her to Crete.
Some suppose Europa lived about 1550 years before the Christian era. It is also likely that this constellation had a place in the zodiac before the Greeks began to cultivate a knowledge of the stars.
Originally, Taurus is thought to be an invention of the Egyptians or Chaldeans. Both the Egyptians and Persians worshipped a deity named Apis under this figure. The archeologist Belzoni is said to have found an embalmed bull in the tomb of Seti near Thebes.
Taurus also was known in China as TaLeang, the great bridge, between Hyades and Pleiades. Jesuit missionaries anglicized this to Kim Neu, the golden ox, to fit in with the western Taurus.
In the Hebrew zodiac, Taurus is ascribed to Joseph, according to some lists, but to Issachar according to the Encyclopedia Judaica.
Sun Enters: April 20
Sun Leaves: May 20
Trait: Possessive, permanent
Positives: Practical, reliable, adept in response to rules, business, moral values. Taureans love luxury, good food, are persistent, solid, determined, affectionate, strong-willed, trustworthy.
Negatives: Possessive, tedious, opinionated, greedy, stubborn, obsessed with routine, resentful.
As a Child: Stubborn
Plant: An oak tree
Career: Banker, Motivational Speaker