FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A clear sky as Tuesday, January 11, comes to an end means a great opportunity to see a cluster of stars in the sky known as the Pleiades (pronounced “plea-uh-dees”).
This easy to spot with the naked eye constellation will be located to the left of and above the moon. You can catch it after dark into Wednesday morning.
The Pleiades will be closest to the moon Wednesday night into Thursday. But, a mostly cloudy sky may end up blocking the view. The same is true for Thursday evening into Friday when it will be located to the right of the moon.
According to expert skywatcher Tony Rice, the Pleiades is commonly known as “The Seven Sisters”, but multiple cultures have referenced it in different ways throughout the years. These different ways also acknowledge different cultural stories regarding the constellation.
Greek: The Pleiades represents the seven daughters of the Titan Atlas cast into the sky by Zeus because Atlas was forced to hold up the sky and could not protect them from Orion.
Norse: The Pleiades represents a hen with chickens.
Danish: The Pleiades represents six brothers and the kidnapped princess they rescued.
Ukrainian: The Pleiades represents seven maids dancing through the sky.
Blackfoot Tribe: The Pleiades represents seven orphans turned to stars, used as an indicator for timing buffalo hunts.
Cherokee Tribe: The Pleiades represents seven misbehaving boys.
Chinese: The Pleiades represents an indicator of the coming growing season.
Japanese: The Pleiades is known as Subaru, which means “unite”. The car manufacturer’s logo includes the 6 brightest stars and was adopted when the company was formed from 5 previously separate companies.