Atmosphere of the Pegasus ring, imagined around the constellations and the stars of l'ancient astronomy

Bellerophon mounted on Pegasus fights the Chimera, by Rubens (1635).

 

Today, the story of the Pegasus ring from the Astronomy line.

Let's take a little plunge into Greek mythology, about 3500 years ago.

A kind of monster, at once lion, goat and snake, spitting fire, is ravaging a Greek region, Lycia, decimating people and livestock. This evil creature is the Chimera.

She will give her name to those strange hybrid creatures that you'll find in curio cabinets, but that's long after our story ...

The King of this region, Lobatès, then sent a notorious hero, Bellerophon, to go and kill the Chimera. In fact, Lobatès' true intention is to send Bellerophon to his death, but things are not going to go as planned... because in order to carry out his mission, Bellerophon will capture and tame an extraordinary creature: Pegasus.

Pegasus, son of Poseidon and the Gorgon Medusa, is a winged horse endowed with extraordinary powers; since birth he has been ridden by Perseus, whom he helped to rescue Princess Andromeda.

Thanks to the powers of this fantastic mount, Bellerophon will defeat the Chimera, and free Lycia from this monster.

Lycia, which was conquered by the Romans several centuries later and then Christianized in the 4th century, saw the birth of Saint Nicholas, thus becoming the origin of the myth of Santa Claus... but that's another story...

Pegasus thus remains linked to Bellerophon, accomplishing many other feats; so much so that the latter ends up considering himself worthy to live with the gods, and undertakes to fly to their domain, Olympus, to join them. A sin of pride... Zeus, angry, makes him fall from his mount in flight and fall into decay.

Pegasus then finds Zeus; the latter makes him his mount, and will charge him to bring lightning and thunder on Olympus. Finally, he will end up transforming it into a constellation to place it in the sky.

Thus was born the story of the constellation Pegasus...

It was listed rather late, in the first century (the oldest Greek constellations, such as Orionwere inventoried several centuries ago).

This constellation has a star in common with the constellation of Andromeda and both form the Great Square of Pegasus, which is a major landmark of the celestial vault.

This story was the inspiration for the Pegasus ring (Latin name for Pegasus), in the shape of a banker's mirror, also known as a witch's mirror; a typical Renaissance object with a characteristic solar shape. The head of the ring is a mirror whose centre is engraved with the constellation of Pegasus and its stars, the body of the ring is engraved with asterisms.

 

Sources :
https://osr.org/fr/blog/
http://www.cosmovisions.com/
https://fr.wikipedia.org/
https://fr.vikidia.org/
https://chimeres-et-curiosites.hubside.fr/

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