The Milky Way: a pattern of stars, or a pattern of gaps?
Luke Busellato/Wikimedia Commons
Around the world and throughout history, we find remarkably similar constellations defined by disparate cultures, as well as strikingly similar narratives describing the relationships between them.
Milky Way star map by Bill Yidumduma Harney, Senior Wardaman Edler.
Bill Yidumduma Harney
Four star names from Aboriginal Australia have been recognised by the International Astronomical Union. So what are they and where to find them?
Moana takes to the sea.
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Disney's Moana has a remarkably accurate depiction of how Polynesian peoples navigate by the stars, and draws attention to the richness of Indigenous astronomy.
The 2007 midwinter solstice illumination of the main altar tabernacle of Old Mission San Juan Bautista, California.
Rubén G. Mendoza/Ancient Editions
At many Spanish missions in the US and Latin America, the rising sun illuminates the altar on the winter solstice or other symbolic days. To the faithful, these events meant that Christ was with them.
Aurora Australis as seen from Victoria.
Alex Cherney, Terrastro Gallery
The southern lights that put on a show recently across parts of Australia are easily explained by science. But some cultures have their own explanation for these dazzling lights in the sky.
The science of astronomy has existed for thousands of years and forms a vital part of Indigenous Australian culture.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander people have between 40,000 and 60,000 years of pre-colonial history that includes stories of constellations they observed in the night sky and traditions that align…