Taurus (constellation)

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Taurus is one of the constellations of the zodiac. Its name is a Latin word meaning 'bull', and its astrological symbol is a stylized bull's head: Taurus.svg (Unicode ♉). Taurus is a large and prominent constellation in the northern hemisphere's winter sky, between Aries to the west and Gemini to the east; to the north lie Perseus and Auriga, to the southeast Orion, to the south Eridanus, and to the southwest Cetus.

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Notable features

In September and October Taurus is visible in the evening along the eastern horizon. The most favorable time to observe Taurus in the night sky is during the months of December and January. By March and April the constellation will appear to the west during the evening twilight.[4] During November, the Taurid meteor shower appears to radiate from the general direction of this constellation. The Beta Taurid meteor shower occurs during the months of June and July in the daytime, and is normally observed using radio techniques.[5]

The brightest member of this constellation is Aldebaran, an orange-hued, spectral class K5 III giant star.[6] Its name is from الدبران al-dabarān, Arabic for 'the follower' (of the Pleiades).[7][8] Forming the profile of a Bull's face is a V or A-shaped asterism of stars. This outline is created by prominent members of the Hyades,[9] the nearest distinct open star cluster after the Ursa Major Moving Group.[10] In this profile, Aldebaran forms the bull's bloodshot eye, which has been described as "glaring menacingly at the hunter Orion",[11] a constellation that lies just to the southwest. The Hyades span about 5° of the sky, so that they can only be viewed in their entirety with binoculars or the unaided eye.[12]

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