Star constellations & agriculture

Orion Constellation (Image taken from wikipedia)

While man-made satellites are looking down to earth for making agricultural decisions, its pretty intriguing to learn that human beings have always looked up, to make key agricultural decisions, given we didn’t have formal calendar as we know them today.

According to this post by Cornell University astronomy department, before there were proper calendars people had no way of determining when to sow, or harvest except by the stars. Constellations made the patterns of the stars easy to remember. The ancient peoples knew for example that when the constellation Orion started to be fully visible winter was coming soon. Or they could look at the Summer Triangle to know when Summer or Spring were coming as well. The stars allowed farmers to plan ahead and form agriculture, and constellations made it easier to recognize and interpret the patterns in the sky.

This paper details agriculture customs performed by Romanian peasants. The Romanian peasants watched the Sky every night, especially the
 pastoral layer of society, and they became so familiar that used stars for
 orientation in time and space.

Fascinating!

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