It was referred to in the Old Testament Job ; and mentioned by Homer in the Iliad xviii, The Romans knew the constellation as Arctos or Ursa. For the Hindus these seven stars represented the seven Rishis or Sages. Five stars of the constellation form an associated group called the Ursa Major moving group, with a common proper motion , but Dubhe the upper pointer and Alcaid the last star of the tail have no connection with the others. Stars in other parts of the sky have been found to belong to the same cluster. Dubhe is the brightest star in Ursa Major, with a magnitude of 1. This constellation also contains the noted visual double of Mizar and Alcor , which sit in the middle of the Big Dipper. Home Science Astronomy. Print Cite.
Position in the Sky
Ursa Major constellation lies in the northern sky. The smaller bear is represented by Ursa Minor. Ursa Major is the largest northern constellation and third largest constellation in the sky. Its brightest stars form the Big Dipper asterism, one of the most recognizable shapes in the sky, also known as the Plough. Ursa Major is well-known in most world cultures and associated with a number of myths. It was one of the constellations catalogued by the Greek astronomer Ptolemy in the 2nd century. Ursa Major is a well-known, significant constellation in many cultures. It is one of the oldest constellations in the sky, with a history dating back to ancient times. The constellation is referenced in Homer and the Bible. A great number of tales and legends across the globe associate Ursa Major with a bear.
The Great Bear
As such, it is more easily visible from the northern hemisphere. See also the complete list of stars in Ursa Major brighter than magnitude 6. Top deep sky objects in Ursa Major. Alternatively it is possible to locate Ursa Major in the night sky using our Online Interactive Planetarium. Ursa Major is circumpolar and transits at UTC altitude: The rise and set times provided here are just directional indications and they refer to a point approximately placed at the center of the constellation. In case of very large constellations like Ursa Major actually is these times can have little relevance. The table below lists the top 20 brightest stars in the Ursa Major constellation.
The constellation Ursa Major, the great bear, is visible in the northern hemisphere all year long. It is a large constellation occupying an area of 1, square degrees. This makes it the third largest constellation in the night sky. It is one of the best-known constellations and is famous for containing an asterism known as the Big Dipper.