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library-->Islamic Civilization

Arabic Star Names: A Treasure of Knowledge Shared by the World

 

 

 

Figure 1: The constellation Centaurus from al-Sufi's book. Source: http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/
world/heavens.html
.

The origin of star names

Regardless of origin, almost all star names belong to old traditions. They are a part of the collective cultural heritage of humanity. Modern astronomers study many stars too faint to see without a telescope, and these are so numerous they are known only by catalogue numbers and coordinates. As a result, official star names are essentially limited to the old names, and typically only bright stars have names.

The majority of stars names are related to their constellation, e.g., the star Deneb means "tail" and labels that part of Cygnus the Swan. Others describe the star itself, such as Sirius, which translates literally as "scorching," apt enough for the brightest star in the sky. Quite a lot of prominent stars bear Arabic names, in which al corresponds to the article "the" and often appears in front, e.g., Algol, "The Ghoul." Its inclusion has become somewhat arbitrary over time. Hence, several star names of Arabic origin are given elsewhere with or without the al- prefix. Most other names of stars inherited from the past have Greek, Latin or Chinese labels.

 

 

 

History of Arabic Star Names

 

Figure 2: The depiction of Orion, as seen from Earth (left) and a mirror-image, from a 13th-century copy of al-Sufi's Book of the Fixed Stars. In this version, Orion's shield has become a long sleeve, typical of Islamic dress. Source: http://www.ianridpath.com/
startales/startales1b.htm
.

Ptolemy, the Greek astronomer who lived and worked around 100-178 CE in Alexandria, Egypt, collected ancient Greek descriptions of 1,022 stars in his famous book The Great System of Astronomy, popularised under its shortened Arabic title, the Almagest. Ptolemy's catalogue of stars arranged into 48 constellations, with estimates of their brightness, based largely on the observations of the Greek earlier astronomers, such as Hipparchus.

Ptolemy's book was translated twice into Arabic in the 9th century and became famous. Many of the Arabic-language star descriptions in the Almagest came to be used widely as names for stars. The leading expert on star names in Islamic astronomy, the German historian Paul Kunitzsch, has identified two traditions of star names in Muslim heritage. The first is the traditional star folklore of the Muslim peoples which he has named "indigenous-Arabic", the second being the scientific Islamic Arabic tradition, which he designates "scientific-Arabic".

 

 

 

 

Figure 3: Depiction of star patterns for the Celestial Twins of the constellation Gemini in al-Sufi's catalogue of stars. Source: http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/
issue/200703/rediscovering.
arabic.science.htm
.

When the Arabic texts were translated into Latin beginning from the 12th century, the Arabic tradition of star names was passed down to the Latin world. However, this happened often in a highly corrupted form that either changed the meaning, or in extreme cases gave birth to words with no meaning at all. Other names were mistakenly transferred from one star to another, so that a name might even refer to a different constellation (Greek or Arabic) rather than to the one of the star's actual residence.

Nevertheless, even with these shortcomings, the majority of star names adopted since the Renaissance are Arabic in origin. In 1603, German astronomer Johann Bayer (1572-1625) instituted a system of assigning Greek letters to stars (Bayer designation), consisting of a lowercase Greek letter followed by the genitive name of the constellation. The letters are usually assigned to the stars in the order of their brightness within a given constellation. For instance, the brightest star in a constellation "Alpha" was rendered as "the second Beta," and so on. To the Greek letter name is appended the Latin possessive form of the constellation name. Thus the brightest star in Lyra, Vega (an Arabic proper name), becomes Alpha of Lyra or Alpha Lyrae (where "Lyrae" means "of Lyra").

 

 

 

 

Al-Sūfī's Book of the Fixed Stars

 

Figure 4: Nasir al-Din al-Tusi, Tarcama-i Kitab-i Suvaru'l-kevâkib, Süleymaniye Library, MS Ayasofya 2595, fol. 25b-26a. Figure of Cassiopeia, dhât al-kursî (the seated one). The constellation, composed of 13 stars, represents the figure of a woman seated on a cushioned chair. The largest of the stars, in the cushion upon which one of Cassiopeia's elbows rests, is called al-kaff al-khadib (written al-hadîb), maning "the hand of the dyed one".

One of those who left an indelib`le influence on the Arabic observation and study of stars is the astronomer Abū al-Husayn ‘Abd Al-Rahmān al-Sūfī (903-986), known also by his Latinized name of Azophi, who systematically revised Ptolemy's catalogue of stars. Al-Sūfī produced a revised and updated version of Ptolemy's Almagest in a major book called Kitab suwar al-kawakib (The Book of Fixed Stars), completed around 964 CE. Built on the basis of the Greek astronomical heritage, the work of al- Sūfī contained a listing of the Arabs' own star names, magnitudes determined by al-Sūfī himself, and two drawings of each constellation, one as it is seen in the sky and one reversed right to left as it would appear on a celestial globe. The oldest surviving copy was produced by his son around 1010 CE and is preserved in the Bodleian Library, Oxford (MS Marsh 144).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 5: Depiction of star patterns for the Celestial Twins (Jawza) of the constellation Gemini in Nasir al-Din al-Tusi's Tarcama-i Kitab-i Suvaru'l-kevâkib, Süleymaniye Library, MS Ayasofya 2595, fol. 51b.


According to Paul Kunitzsch, the German authority on Arabic star names, local tradition of the peoples of Islamic lands in the Arabian Peninsula and in the Middle East had their own names for various bright stars such as Aldebaran, and they commonly regarded single stars as representing animals or people. For example, the stars we know as Alpha and Beta Ophiuchi were regarded by them as a shepherd and his dog, while neighbouring stars made up the outlines of a field with sheep. Some of the Arabic names were already so many centuries old that their meanings were lost even to al-Sūfī and his contemporaries, and they remain unknown today. Other star names used by al-Sūfī and his compatriots were direct translations of Ptolemy's descriptions. For example, the star name Fomalhaut comes from the Arabic meaning "mouth of the southern fish", which is where Ptolemy had described it in the Almagest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 6: Depiction of star patterns fort he Pegasus (al-Faras al-a'zam) constellations from Nasir al-Din al-Tusi's Tarcama-i Kitab-i Suvaru'l-kevâkib, Süleymaniye Library, MS Ayasofya 2595, fol. 37a.

Al-Sūfī did his own brightness and magnitude estimates which frequently deviated from those in Ptolemy's work. He identified the Large Magellanic Cloud, which is visible from Yemen, though not from Isfahan in the centre of Iran where he worked; it was not seen by Europeans until Magellan's voyage in the 16th century. He also did the earliest recorded observation of the Andromeda Galaxy, which he described as a "small cloud". He observed that the ecliptic plane is inclined with respect to the celestial equator and more accurately calculated the length of the tropical year. He observed and described the stars, their positions, their magnitudes and their colour, setting out his results constellation by constellation. His famous Book of Fixed Stars was translated into Latin and had a major influence in Europe since the 13th century, both by its textual descriptions and pictures.

 

 

 

List of star names having Arabic origin

In the following, we present a list of Arabic Star Names. This list does not contain all documented star names in the Arabic nomenclature. Note also that some stars may have more than one Arabic name (such as: Gamma Gem, Eta UMa, Beta Cet, Lambda Ori, Alpha Psc, Beta Ori ), and that some star names may be composites of Arabic and Latin words (such as: Alula Australis (Xi UMa). Some of the above names are still used in the sky atlases, while others are rarely used, and others disappeared from astronomical atlases.

No.

Proper Name

Arabic Name

Meaning

Star

01

Acamar

Akhir an-Nahr

End of the river

Theta Eri

02

Achernar

Akhir an-Nahr

End of the river

Alpha Eri

03

Acrab

Al-'Aqrab

The scorpion

Beta Sco

04

Acubens

Az-Zubana

The claw

Alpha Cnc

05

Adhafera

Ad-Dafirah

The curl

Zeta Leo

06

Adhara

Al-'Adhara

The maidens

Epsilon CMa

07

Ain

'Ain

"Eye" of the Bull

Epsilon Tau

08

Albali

Al-Bali'

The swallower

Epsilon Aqr

09

Alchibah

Al-Khiba'

The tent

Alpha Crv

10

Aldebaran

Ad-Dabaran

"Follower" of the Pleiades

Alpha Tau

11

Alderamin

Adh-Dhira' al-Yamin ?

The right forearm ?

Alpha Cep

12

Alfirk

Al-Firq

The flock

Beta Cep

13

Algedi

Al-Jady

The goat

Alpha Cap

14

Algenib

Al-Janb

The flank

Gamma Peg

15

Algieba

Al-Jabhah

"The forehead" of the lion

Gamma Leo

16

Algebar

Al-Jabbar

The giant

Beta Ori

17

Algol

Al-Ghul

The ghoul

Beta Per

18

Algorab

Al-Ghurab

The raven

Delta Crv

19

Alhena

Al-Han'ah

The brand-mark

Gamma Gem

20

Alioth

Al-Jawn

The black horse

Epsilon UMa

21

Alkaid

Al-Qa'id

"Leader" of the mourning maidens

Eta UMa

22

Alkes

Al-Ka's

The cup

Alpha Crt

23

Almak

'Anaq al-Ard

Earth-kid

Gamma And

24

Almeisan

Al-Maisan

The shining one

Gamma Gem

25

Alnair

An-Nayyir

The bright one

Alpha Gru

26

Alnair

An-Nayyir

The bright one

Zeta Cen

27

Alnilam

An-Nidham

The string of pearls

Epsilon Ori

28

Alnitak

An-Nitaq

The belt

Zeta Ori

29

Alphard

Al-Fard

The solitary one

Alpha Hya

30

Alphecca

Al-Fakkah

"The broken" ring of stars

Alpha CrB

31

Alpheratz

Surrat al-Faras

Navel of the steed

Alpha And

32

Alsafi

Al-Athafi

"The tripods" for cooking on

Sigma Dra

33

Alsuhail

Suhail

Un-translated

Lambda Vel

34

Altair

At-Ta'ir

"The flying" eagle

Alpha Aql

35

Altais

At-Tinnin

The great serpent

Delta Dra

36

Alterf

At-Tarf

"The glance" of the lion

Lambda Leo

37

Aludra

Al-'Udhrah

The maidenhead

Eta CMa

38

Alula Australis

Al-Qafzah al-Ula

The southern one of "the first leap"

Xi UMa

39

Alula Borealis

Al-Qafzah al-Ula

The northern one of "the first leap"

Nu UMa

40

Alya

Al-Alyah

The fatty tail of a sheep

Theta Ser

41

Angetenar

'Arjat an-Nahr

Curve of the river

Tau2 Eri

42

Ankaa

Al-'Anka'

Phoenix

Alpha Phe

43

Arkab

Al-'Urqub

The heel-tendon

Beta Sgr

44

Arneb

Al-Arnab

The hare

Alpha Lep

45

Arrakis

Ar-Raqis

The dancer

Mu Dra

46

Atik

Al-'Atiq

"The shoulder" of the Pleiades

Omicron Per

47

Auva

Al-'Awwa'

The barker

Delta Vir

48

Azha

Al-Udhi

The hatching-place

Eta Eri

49

Baham

Al-Biham

The livestock

Theta Peg

50

Baten Kaitos

Batn Qaytus

Belly of Cetus

Zeta Cet

51

Beid

Al-Baid

The eggs

Omicron1 Eri

52

Benetnash

Banat Na'sh

Daughters of the bier

Eta UMa

53

Betelgeuse

Yad al-Jauza'

Hand of Orion

Alpha Ori

54

Botein

Al-Butain

The little belly

Delta Ari

55

Caph

Al-Kaff

"The palm" of the Pleiades

Beta Cas

56

Celbalrai

Kalb ar-Ra'i

The shepherd's dog

Beta Oph

57

Chort

Al-Kharat

The rib

Theta Leo

58

Cursa

Al-Kursi

The chair

Beta Eri

59

Dabih

Sa'd adh-dhabih

The lucky star of "the slaughterer"

Beta Cap

60

Deneb

Dhanab ad-Dajajah

Tail of the hen

Alpha Cyg

61

Deneb

Dhanab ad-Dulfin

Tail of the Dolphin

Epsilon Del

62

Deneb Algedi

Dhanab al-Jady

Tail of the goat

Delta Cap

63

Deneb Kaitos

Dhanab Qaytus

Tail of Cetus

Beta Cet

64

Denebola

Dhanab al-Asad

Tail of the lion

Beta Leo

65

Diphda

Ad-Difdi'

The frog

Beta Cet

67

Dschubba

Al-Jabhah

"The forehead" of the scorpion

Delta Sco

68

Dubhe

Ad-Dubb

The bear

Alpha UMa

69

Dziban

Adh-Dhi'ban

The two wolves

Psi Dra

70

Edasich

Adh-Dhikh

The hyena

Iota Dra

71

El Nath

An-Nath

The butting

Beta Tau

72

Eltanin

At-Tinnin

The great serpent

Gamma Dra

73

Enif

Al-Anf

The nose

Epsilon Peg

74

Errai

Ar-Ra'i

The shepherd

Gamma Cep

75

Fomalhaut

Fam al-Hut

Mouth of the fish

Alpha PsA

76

Furud

Al-Furud

"Individual" stars

Zeta CMa

77

Gienah

Al-Janah

The wing

Gamma Crv

78

Gienah

Al-Janah

The wing

Epsilon Cyg

79

Gomeisa

Al-Ghumaisa'

The bleary-eyed one

Beta CMi

80

Hadar

Hadar

Un-translated

Beta Cen

81

Hamal

Al-Hamal

The ram

Alpha Ari

82

Heka

Al-Haq'ah

The white spot

Lambda Ori

83

Homam

Sa'd al-humam

The lucky star of "the high-minded man"

Zeta Peg

84

Izar

Al-Izar

The loin-cloth

Epsilon Boo

85

Jabbah

Al-Jabhah

"The forehead" of the scorpion

Nu Sco

86

Kaffaljidhma

Al-Kaff al-Jadhma'

The cut-short hand

Gamma Cet

87

Kaus Australis

Al-Qaus

The southern one of "the bow"

Epsilon Sgr

88

Kaus Borealis

Al-Qaus

The northern one of "the bow"

Lambda Sgr

89

Kaus Media

Al-Qaus

The middle one of "the bow"

Delta Sgr

90

Keid

Al-Qaid

The broken egg-shells

Omicron2 Eri

91

Kitalpha

Qit'at al-Faras

Part of the horse

Alpha Equ

92

Kokab

Al-Kaukab

The star

Beta UMi

93

Kurhah

Al-Qurhah

"The blaze" on a horse's brow

Xi Cep

94

Lesath

Al-Las'ah

The sting

Upsilon Sco

95

Maasym

Al-Mi'sam

The wrist

Lambda Her

96

Maaz

Al-Ma'z

The he-goat

Epsilon Aur

97

Marfik

Al-Mirfaq

The elbow

Lambda Oph

98

Markab

Mankib al-Faras

"The shoulder" of the horse

Alpha Peg

99

Matar

Sa'd Matar

The lucky star of "the rain"

Eta Peg

100

Mebsuta

Al-Mabsutah

"The outstretched" paw

Epsilon Gem

101

Megrez

Al-Maghriz

"The insertion-point" of the Bear's tail

Delta UMa

102

Meissa

Al-Maisan

The shining one

Lambda Ori

103

Mekbuda

Al-Maqbudah

"The pulled-in" paw

Zeta Gem

104

Menkalinan

Mankib Dhi-al-'Inan

Shoulder of the rein-holder

Beta Aur

105

Menkar

Al-Minkhar

The nostril

Alpha Cet

106

Menkib

Al-Mankib

"The shoulder" of the Pleiades

Xi Per

107

Merak

Al-Maraqq

The loins

Beta UMa

108

Mintaka

Al-Mintaqah

The belt

Delta Ori

109

Mirak

Al-Mi'zar

The loin-cloth

Beta And

110

Mirfak

Al-Mirfaq

"The elbow" of the Pleiades

Alpha Per

111

Mizar

Al-Maraqq

The loins

Zeta UMa

112

Mothallah

Al-Muthallath

The triangle

Alpha Tri

113

Muphrid

Al-Mufrid

The solitary one

Eta Boo

114

Murzim

Al-Murzim

The roarer

Beta CMa

115

Nashira

Sa'd Nashirah

The lucky star of Nashirah (un-translated)

Gamma Cap

116

Nekkar

Al-Baqqar

The cattleman

Beta Boo

117

Nasl

An-Nasl

The arrowhead

Gamma Sgr

118

Nihal

An-Nihal

The camels quenching their thirst

Beta Lep

119

Nusakan

An-Nasaqan

The two series

Beta CrB

120

Okda

Al-'Uqdah

The knot

Alpha Psc

121

Phact

Al-Fakhitah

The dove

Alpha Col

123

Phad

Al-Fakhidh

The thigh

Gamma UMa

124

Pherkad

Al-Farqad

The calf

Gamma UMi

125

Rasalased

Ra's al-Asad

Head of the lion

Mu Leo

126

Rasalgethi

Ra's al-Jathi

Head of the kneeling one

Alpha Her

127

Rasalhague

Ra's al-Hawwa'

Head of the snake-man

Alpha Oph

128

Rastaban

Ra's ath-Thu'ban

Head of the snake

Beta Dra

129

Rigel

Ar-Rijl

The foot

Beta Ori

130

Rigilkent

Rijl Qanturus

Foot of the centaur

Alpha Cen

131

Risha

Ar-Risha'

The rope

Alpha Psc

132

Rukbah

Ar-Rukbah

The knee

Delta Cas

133

Rukbat

Ar-Rukbah

The knee

Alpha Sgr

134

Sabik

As-Sabiq

The preceding

Eta Oph

135

Sadachbia

Sa'd al-Akhbiyah

Lucky star of the tents

Gamma Aqr

136

Sadalbari

Sa'd al-Bari'

Lucky star of the excellent one

Mu Peg

137

Sadalmelik

Sa'd al-Malik

Lucky star of the king

Alpha Aqr

138

Sadalsuud

Sa'd as-Su'ud

Luck of lucks

Beta Aqr

139

Sadr

As-Sadr

The breast

Gamma Cyg

140

Saiph

As-Saif

The sword

Kappa Ori

141

Scheat

As-Saq

The leg

Beta Peg

142

Shaula

Ash-Shaulah

The raised tail of the scorpion

Lambda Sco

143

Shedir

As-Sadr

The breast

Alpha Cas

144

Sheratan

Ash-Sharatan

The two signs

Beta Ari

145

Sirrah

Surrat al-Faras

Navel of the steed

Alpha And

146

Skat

As-Saq

The leg

Delta Aqr

147

Sulafat

As-Sulahfah

The tortoise

Gamma Lyr

148

Tania Australis

Ath-Thaniyah

The southern one of "the second" leap

Mu UMa

149

Tania Borealis

Ath-Thaniyah

The northern one of "the second" leap

Lambda UMa

150

Talitha Australis

Ath-Thalithah

The southern one of "the third" leap

Kappa UMa

151

Talitha Borealis

Ath-Thalithah

The northern one of "the third" leap

Iota UMa

152

Tarf

At-Tarf

"The glance" of the lion

Beta Cnc

153

Thuban

Ath-Thu'ban

The snake

Alpha Dra

154

Unukalhai

'Unuq al-Hayyah

Neck of the snake

Alpha Ser

155

Vega

Al-Waqi'

"The stooping" eagle

Alpha Lyr

156

Wasat

Wasat as-Sama'

"Middle" of the sky

Delta Gem

157

Wazn

Al-Wazn

The weight

Beta Col

158

Wezen

Al-Wazn

The weight

Delta CMa

159

Yed Prior

Al-Yad

The preceding one of "the hand"

Delta Oph

160

Yed Posterior

Al-Yad

The succeeding one of "the hand"

Epsilon Oph

161

Zaniah

Az-Zawiyah

The angle

Epsilon Vir

162

Zaurac

Az-Zawraq

The boat

Gamma Eri

163

Zavijava

Zawiyat al-'Awwa'

Angle of the barker

Beta Vir

164

Zubenelgenubi

Az-Zuban al-Janubi

The southern claw

Alpha Lib

165

Zubeneshamali

Az-Zuban ash-Shamali

The northern claw

Beta Lib

Annotated Resources:

Gibson, Steven, "Star Names". Online at: http://www.naic.edu/~gibson/starnames/ (accessed October 2007).

Gingerich, Owen, "Zoomorphic Astrolabes and the Introduction of Arabic Star Names into Europe", in From Deferent to Equant. A Volume of Studies on the History of Science in the Ancient and Medieval Near East in Honour of E.S. Kennedy. Edited by David A. King and George Saliba. New York: New York Academy of Science, 1987, pp. 89-104.

Harper, David, and Stockman, Lynne Marie, "(Un)Common Star Names": http://www.obliquity.com/skyeye/misc/name.html (dated: 1995-2007).

Hinckley Allen, Richard, Star Names: Their Lore and Meaning. Dover reprint, 1963; revised edition (first edition in 1899).

Ibn al-Salāh, Ahmad ibn Muhammad, Zur Kritik der Koordinatenüberlieferung im Sternkatalog des Almagest. Arabic text, German translation and introduction by Paul Kunitzsch. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht, 1975.

International Astronomical Union, IAU, "Buying Star Names". Online at: http://www.iau.org/BUYING_STAR_NAMES.244.0.html (accessed October 2007).

International Astronomical Union, IAU Commission 5, "Star names: history", by Marion Schmitz, Chair of IAU Working Group on Designations. Online at: http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/IAU/starnames.html (posted 21 September 2004)).

Jordanian Astronomical Society, The "Arabic star names". Online at: http://www.icoproject.org/star.html.

Kunitzsch, Paul, Arabische Sternnamen in Europa. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, 1959.

Kunitzsch, Paul, "On the Medieval Arabic Knowledge of the Star Alpha Eridiani." Journal for the History of Aarabic Science vol. 1 (1977): pp. 263-267.

Kunitzsch, Paul, "Der Sternhimmel in den ‘Dichterischen Vergleichen der Andalus-Araber'." Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft vol. 128 (1978): pp. 238-251.

Kunitzsch, Paul, Über eine anwā'-Tradition mit bisher unbekannten Sternnamen. München: Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1983.

Kunitzsch, Paul, Claudius Ptolemus. Der Sternkatalog des Almagest: Die arabisch-mittelalterliche Tradition. Vol. I: Die arabischen Übersetzungen. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, 1986 (edition and German translation of two Arabic versions of the stars catalogue included in Books VII and VIII of the Almagest).

Kunitsch, Paul, "Star Catalogues and Star Tables in Medieval Oriental and European Astronomy." Indian Journal of History of Science vol. 21 (1986): pp. 113-122.

Kunitzsch, Paul, "The Astronomer Abū 'l-Husayn al-Sūfī and his Book on the Constellations." Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Arabisch-Islamisch Wissenschaften vol. 3 (1986): pp. 56-81.

Kunitzsch, Paul, The Arabs and the Stars. Texts and Traditions on the Fixed Stars and their Influence in Medieval Europe. London: Variorum Reprints, 1989.

Kunitzsch, Paul, "Abd al-Malik Ibn Habib's Book on the Stars." Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Arabisch-Islamisch Wissenschaften vol. 9 (1994): pp. 161-194.

Kunitzsch, Paul, Stars and Numbers: Astronomy and Mathematics in the Medieval Arab and Western Worlds. Variorum Collected Studies. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2004.

Kunitzsch, Paul and Smart, Tim, Short Guide to Modern Star Names and Their Derivations. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, 1986.

Sūfī, al-, Abū al-Husayn ‘Abd al-Rahmān b. 'Umar, Kitab suwar al-kawakib al-thamaniya wa-'l-arba'īn (Book of the images of the forty-eight stars). Beirut: Daar al-Afāq al jadīda, 1981.

Sūfī, al-, Abū al-Husayn ‘Abd al-Rahmān b. 'Umar, Description des étoiles fixes: Suwar al-kawākib. Traduction de Hans Carl Frederik Christian Schjellerup. Edité par Fuat Sezgin. Frankfurt: IGAIW, 1986.

Thompson, Gary D., "An Annotated Bibliography of Studies of Occidental Constellations and Star Names to the Classical Period". "Arabic". Online at: http://members.optusnet.com.au/~gtosiris/page4.html#Arabic (2001-2007).

SIMBAD Astronomical Database [SIMBAD = Set of Identifications, Measurements, and Bibliography for Astronomical Data, operated at CDS, Strasbourg, France]: http://simbad.u-strasbg.fr/simbad/ (SIMBAD is used by professional astronomers for information on stars, such as position, brightness, etc.)

Wikipedia, "List of Arabic star names". Online at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Arabic_Star_Names) (accessed October 2007). Presents a huge collection in which the names are given even in Arabic script.

 

 

 

 

 

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