About Astronomical Symbols
Astronomical symbols are pictorial symbols used to represent celestial bodies. These symbols represent all the planets, the Sun, the Moon, and other objects of the universe. The European Astronomy used these symbols. Earliest forms of these symbols were found in ancient Greece. Later in the 18th and 19th centuries, additional symbols were discovered.
Further in the 20th century, with the discovery of more planets and celestial bodies, new symbols were created. Astronomers commonly used these astronomical symbols or codes for many years. Even astrologer used these symbols. But recently astronomical symbols are not as popular as in the 18th century.
Significant Astronomical Symbols
The Sun – The symbol for the Sun is a pictorial representation of the Sun. It is a circle with a black spot in the center. This spot represents a sunspot.
The Moon – The symbol for the Moon is the crescent shape of the Moon. This astronomical symbol is a universal symbol for the Moon in many places.
Earth – As the Earth is spherical, the symbol of the planet is also a sphere with two lines cutting at the center. These lines represent the latitude and longitude. Thus we also use a globe as a miniature model of the earth because of its spherical shape.
Symbols For Other Planets
Mercury – The symbol of Mercury represents the Roman god Mercury. It is a circle with a plus sign at the bottom and small horn-like design at the top of the ring. The circle and the horn-like design stands for the head and winged cap of the Roman god.
Venus – Venus has a similar symbol like Mercury, and it just does not have that horn-like design on the top. Also, Venus is the Roman goddess of love. Hence, this symbol also represents feminism.
Mars – The modern-day symbol used for males is the symbol of Mars. This astronomical symbol is a circle with an arrow-like design outside the circle. This arrow-like design stands for the spear of Mars, the Roman god of war.
Jupiter – The astronomical symbol for Jupiter is like numerical number four. It represents the arm of Jupiter, holding a lightning bolt. Some researchers say that it also represents the initial letter of Zeus. Zeus is a Greek mythological god of sky, lightning, and thunder.
Saturn – This astronomical symbol for Saturn is similar to the alphabet “h.” it is meant to represent a sickle used by the god of the harvest.
Uranus –According to Greek mythology, Uranus represents the sky, heaven, and the stars. The Sun and Mars controlls the sky. Hence, it is a combination of the symbol of the Sun and Mars.
Neptune – The trident of the Roman god of the sea is used to represent the planet, Neptune. Also, the name of the Roman god of the sea is Neptune.
Various astronomical symbols are being used to represent planets, minor planets, stars, constellations, and other planetary bodies. Mostly all these symbols were used before the 19th century. But only a few of them find importance in modern times. Usually, astrologers use these symbols nowadays. Zodiac signs are similar to these symbols.