From August to October, what is known as the tenth constellation of the zodiac, Capricorn, is visible in the night sky. It looks like a kind of triangle and some star-gazers have described it as a “bikini bottom”. However, it is generally believed that this cluster of stars portrays a hybrid figure: a creature which is half-goat from the waist up and half-fish from the waist down. This unlikely-looking creature dates back to Babylonian and Sumerian times, civilisations that were particularly keen on hybrid creatures and called this constellation SUHUR-MASH-HA, the ‘Fish-goat’.
The brightest stars in the constellation are:
ALGEDI (which means goat or ibex), is a α (alfa) Capricorni; it is a multiple star consisting of two yellow and orange stars, known as α¹ and α² which are respectively 1,600 light years and 109 light years away.
DABIH, ß (beta) is also a double star, where the brighter star looks white and is 344 light years away, while the companion star looks light blue.
DENEB ALGEDI (the tail of the goat), Δ (delta) is a giant white star, the brightest in the constellation. It is located 39 light years away.
DORSUM, Θ Capricorni, is a white dwarf star located 158 light years away.
BATEN ALGIEDI, Ω Capricorni, is a red giant located 630 light years away from earth.
MARRAKK, Ζ Capricorni, is a binary star whose primary star is a yellow supergiant located 398 light years away.
Then there’s NASKIRA (the fortunate) which is a γ (gamma) and is a white star located 139 light years away. But Naskira also has an unusual story, in fact…