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Algeiba - Starman's Star

In "Starscape I" Paul and Scott happen upon the painting pictured to the right. Paul recognizes the "highlighted" star in the painting as his home. The painting answered the question left dangling by the movie and most of the series: "Where is the Starman from?" The "highlighted" star is Algeiba in the constellation of Leo. Gayle HighPine posted the following information about Algeiba to STARMANET a few years ago.
The constellation in Jenny's painting is the "Sickle of Leo," the part of the constellation Leo that represents the Lion's mane. The star indeed does have a name, Gamma Leonis, aka Algieba, or Algeiba. (Both spellings are used, in different reference books, and the pronunciation in most references is given with a hard g, even though it comes from the Arabic Al-Jabbar, meaning The Brow [of the Lion].) Algieba is only 86 light years from Earth, so it is right in our neighborhood. Algieba is a yellow star, and some of us would have thought that a blue star would have been more appropriate (after all, we are literally made of the light from our sun -- since all our food ultimately comes from plants, which convert sunlight to matter) but it is canon now, so there it is.

Some of the dialogue when Starman sees the painting is a little nonsensensical. "No name in any language for the number of stars in the universe" is irrelevant; the number of stars visible to the naked eye is only in the thousands (and most of the stars we can see with the naked eye are within a few hundred light years of us) and Algieba is one of the 100 brightest stars in the sky, and the Sickle of Leo is a conspicuous and easily found constellation. It can be located in relation to the Big Dipper... [Here's] a rough ASCII star map...


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                          about 5 "dippersful"       *

                          distance -- to the

                          next bright stars -->

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Location of Algeiba in Leo

Additional information can be found at the St. Cloud State University's astronomy website.


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Last updated 1/20/01