Advanced Intermediate Beginner Home Spanish Spanish


Orion was a great hunter.
Courtesy of Corel Corporation

The ancient Greeks saw the figure of the Greek myth Orion in the nighttime sky. There are several different stories about the birth of Orion. According to one version of the myth, Orion was the son of a poor shepherd called Hyrieus. Once, Zeus, Hermes, and Poseidon stopped by Hyrieus'house. Hyrieus was so generous with his guests that he killed the only animal he had-an ox.

Hyrieus was not aware that his guests were gods. The gods wanted to reward Hyrieus'generosity by granting him a wish. Hyrieus' biggest desire was to have a child. The gods told him to bury the hide of the bull he had sacrificed to them and to pee on it. After nine months, a boy was born in that place. The child became a very handsome and strong man.

He was such a good hunter that he was hired by the king Oenopion to kill the ferocious beasts that were terrifying the habitants of the island Chios. Happy for his success, Orion said he would kill all the wild animals on the earth. But. the earth goddess Gaia, who was the mother of all animals, was not pleased with Orion's intention.

Then, Gaia set an enormous scorpion on Orion. Orion soon realized that his strength and sword were useless against that mighty beast. He tried to escape, but the scorpion stung him to death. As a reward, Gaia placed the scorpion in the sky as a constellation which appears to be constantly chasing after Orion whose figure was also placed among the stars.

The constellation, Orion

Credits Settings Tools Sponsorship Membership Contact us About the site Site map Help Myths People News Arts, books and film Images and multimedia Tours Life Geology Physics Space weather Space Missions Solar system Astronomy and the Universe Shop for science stuff Games Ask a scientist Journal Comets Pluto Neptune Uranus Saturn Jupiter Asteroids Mars Earth Venus Mercury Sun Teacher resources Kids Space Search Home
Last modified prior to September, 2000 by the Windows Team

The source of this material is Windows to the Universe, at at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR). ©1995-1999, 2000 The Regents of the University of Michigan; ©2000-05 University Corporation for Atmospheric Research. All Rights Reserved. Site policies and disclaimer