Home > Anishinaabe Constellation, Ephemeris Program, Observing > 07/26/2022 – Ephemeris – An Anishinaabe hero is in the sky

07/26/2022 – Ephemeris – An Anishinaabe hero is in the sky

July 26, 2022

This is Ephemeris for Tuesday, July 26th. Today the Sun will be up for 14 hours and 53 minutes, setting at 9:15, and it will rise tomorrow at 6:23. The Moon, 2 days before new, will rise at 4:51 tomorrow morning.

Scorpius the scorpion is now seen low in the southern sky in the evening. To me, the stars here make a very good scorpion. Scorpius was invented by the people of the Middle East, where scorpions are plentiful. The Anishinaabe native peoples of our area, however, saw one of their legendary hero figures, Nenabozho*. In the sky, the arc of three stars at the front of the scorpion and to the right of the bright star Antares is his bow. He is shooting an arrow toward the receding Great Panther or Curly Tail a constellation of spring whose curl of a tail is the head of the constellation Leo, now lost in the evening twilight in the west. Nenabozho was a hero in their creation stories, and a trickster who was sometimes seen as a rabbit.

The astronomical event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan (EDT, UT – 4 hours). They may be different for your location.

* Nenabozho is pronounced like Nana-bouz-hou, though different tribes pronounced it differently. I could not find Nenabozho and its various other transliterations, one of which was Nanaboozhoo in the Ojibwe People’s Dictionary (https://ojibwe.lib.umn.edu/). However, since he occasionally shape-shifted into being a rabbit his name includes a part of the name for rabbit, waabooz. That entry had several audio examples. That’s how I got the pronunciation for the radio program.


Nenabozho animated finder chart

Animated finder for the Anishinaabe constellation of Nenabozho showing the unannotated star field, the Western constellation of Scorpius and Nenabozho. On the chart, it’s spelled Nanaboujou. Created using Stellarium (both star lore images are embedded in Stellarium). The Anishinaabe image embedded in Stellarium is from Ojibwe Giizhig Anung Masinaaigan – Ojibiwe Sky Star Map created by A. Lee, W. Wilson, and C. Gawboy.

A story of Waynaboozhoo (same fellow) is told in a book recommended by the curator of the museum of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians. It’s The Mishomis Book – The Voice of the Ojibway by Edward Benton-Banai, University of Minnesota Press.

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