ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Saturn, 15th century artwork. Engraving of Saturn on a chariot. Saturn was the god of agriculture in Roman times, so he is shown here as holding a scythe (used to harvest grain). The conjunction (alignment) of Saturn with other planets and star constellations in the sky is considered to be significant in astrology, the ancient belief that the celestial bodies influence human lives. The symbols on the chariot's wheels are the zodiac signs Capricorn and Aquarius, for which Saturn is the ruling planet. This artwork is from Poeticon Astronomicon (Poetic Astronomy), a star atlas by Hyginus that was published in 1482.
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