The Libra is a well-known sign of the zodiac with associated birthdays in late September through mid-October.
Many know it is a zodiac sign but what else is widely known about this specific constellation. Let’s take a look at the Libra, the scales, and the equalizer in the sky.
Libra Constellation Facts, Myths, Size and Location
The constellation Libra is known as a sign of the Zodiac, but not so much as a constellation that the signs are based upon.
The celestial body is one of importance though as forms of Libra are recognized across cultures as the bringer of level-headedness and equal judgement under the law
Libra Constellation Shape
The shape of Libra can best be described as a quadrangle.
It is a sort of triangular shape at the top with two arms that would appear if you connected the dots between the six stars that make up the shape.
The two arms are representative of the arms of the scale that Libra is emulating and by which all things are balanced.
Libra Constellation Size
Libra is a mid-sized constellation that ranks 29 of 88 modern constellations in the sky above.
At 538.1 square degrees, this constellation takes up 1.304 % of the nighttime sky and is about average in terms of the other constellations as many in the mid-range of sizes seem to come in around this number of square degrees.
It rests near the much larger Hydra constellation, near where the tail of the beast terminates.
Libra Constellation Stars
Though there are six main stars, on a clear night there can be seen that Libra actually contains many more stars than those initial six that are easily seen, a whopping 97 stars, in fact.
There are some interesting stars that are located in her boundaries and are considered to be a part of this constellation.
The Methuselah star is a part of the Libra constellation and is the oldest known star in the universe, some saying it is older than even the universe itself, meaning that this celestial body may be the only know observer of the Big Bang that is theorized to have created the universe we find ourselves in.
There is another star called Zubeneschamali located within the Libra constellation.
It holds the distinction of being the brightest star in the constellation, though its classification is only that of Beta, meaning that in comparison to other stars it is fairly dim.
The interesting thing about this star is its color.
Many people believe the star appears to be green, but other people discount this.
It is due to the fact that green is not a color we typically see for the colors of the stars.
Decide for yourself, you never really know what space can contribute to the appearance of a star, or it could be our Earth’s atmosphere too.
Libra Constellation Location
In the Northern Hemisphere Libra will make its appearance in May and is best seen around 9 p.m.
It doesn’t ever rise high into the sky though and sits along the horizon in August until it’s a eventual disappearance in September.
Usually you will be able to locate it in the southwest region of the sky.
In the Southern Hemisphere, the constellation makes its debut in the east part of the sky in the month of April.
It then is seen through the month of July to be climbing higher until it reaches its pinnacle and begins its descent.
It will retreat this way until it lies on the horizon before completely disappearing from the sky in mid-October, around the same time that the zodiac birthday time frame is ending.
Libra Constellation Mythology
Libra is the single sign of the zodiac and the only constellation that is not an animal or human representation.
Libra is also known as the scales and is representative of the scales that were carried by the goddess of Justice, Themis.
You may have seen her depicted in front of a courthouse or legal building holding her scales and with her eyes covered by a blindfold to represent the blindness of justice.
The scales that represent her are why Libras are said to be the most balanced of the signs of the zodiac.
This is not always true, of course, but it has a nice idea behind it, though Libra doesn’t have such an elaborate story as some constellations do.
Libra Constellation Meteor Showers
There are a surprising number of meteor showers that occur within the boundaries of the Libra constellation, and they are happening most of the year.
They are categorized by brightness, meaning they have the most meteors per hour that can cast light outward through space.
The showers in Libra are called Librids.
From the brightest to the dimmest they are Delta, April Alpha, April Chi, Kappa, Gamma, and the Northern and Souther Librid-Lupids.
The one that is the most different among this is the Kappa Librids which are a shower that occurs during the daytime for us on Earth.
Libra Constellation In the Sky
Libra is not one of the better known or well see constellations as it is fairly dim with the brightest star only coming in at 6.5 in brightness.
Sirius in the constellation known as the greater dog coned in at 1,5, with the smaller numbers being the brighter stars that give off more light.
This is a somewhat unusual characteristic, but then again Libra is anything but what would be considered a typical zodiac constellation.
Libra is unique, with many factor that point to the one-of-a-kind nature it is in possession of.