Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Constellation-Southern Cross



Southern Cross can be seen as brilliant cross in the southern sky. Southern Cross shows the South Pole.

The Southern Cross is a constellation (group of stars) that is found in the southern region of the night sky. It is the most commonly known, and easily identifiable of all the southern constellations.

The Southern Cross' stars were of great importance to the aboriginal people. In central Australia, it was the belief that the pattern created by the stars in the cross was the footprint of a wedge-tailed eagle. The pointers were his throwing stick and the dark patch, his nest.

Other indigenous peoples believed that the Southern Cross and its pointers was a Stingray (the cross) that was being pursued throughout the southern sky by a Shark (the pointers). The aboriginals of eastern Australia, however, called the Cross "Mirrabooka". Mirrabooka was a kind and clever man who was immortalised by being put in the night sky by Biami, the creator. This was to assist with watching over the people on earth. The pointers are Mirrabooka's eyes - seeing all of the earth.


There was a large rock cod (fish) named Alakitja who lived in the waters of the river known as the milky way. On his way to his favourite water hole he carefully avoided the sky people's fish traps. He swam pas the magnificent white blooms of the countless water lilies. These flowers shone so brightly that the people on earth could see them. They became known as stars. When he finally completed his journey and reached his waterhole he rested away from the harsh sun, under a large rock.

Meanwhile, two brothers had been creating rivers and mountains on earth. They suddenly became hungry and started to search for food. They saw the giant cod, Alakitja, in the waterhole so they threw their spears, killing him.

The brothers each made their own campfire and shared the large fish. They are still visible today - the 2 campfires are the Southern Cross stars known as Delta Crucis and Gamma Crucis. The two brightest stars of the Cross - Alpha and Beta Centauri are the two brothers and Alakitja is the nearby dark area (the coal sack).

Alpha and Beta Centauri, the 2 pointers, are actually friends of the two brothers who are waiting for their share of the fish.

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