Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Inuit saw at least 15 differnt constellations, though they were similar to what we see presently. For example, they believe that The Big Dipper is a Giant Caribou. Orion is a group of stairs, leading from Earth to the sky. These are other constellations the Inuit see in the night sky.

The Two Sunbeams
Aajuuk, an important constellation for timekeeping

The Two Placed Far Apart
Aakkuttujuuk, two stars signaling the return of sunlight to the Arctic

Qimmiitt, five dogs harrassing Nanook, or Nanurjuk, the polar bear


Lamp Stand
Pituak, stand holding burning fuel that makes light

The big dipper represents Tukturjuit, the Giant Caribou

Two In Front
Sivulliik, "The First Ones" An angry grandfather chasing an orphan boy

The One Behind
Kingulliq, the grandmother chasing the two in front

Sakkiattiak, The Pleiades, are seen as a breatbone

Ullaktut, Orion's belt, is seen as three lost hunters looking for Nanook, the polar bear

Blubber Container
Uqsuutaatiaq, a seal flipper sewn shut, holding lamp fuel

Never Moves
Nuuttuittuq, the north star, Polaris, the star that never moves

Nephews and Neices
Qangimmaariik, a group of children

The Milky Way
The divider, Aviguti

The Great Wolf
Lupus, the wolf, has been noticeable by many civilizations over time.