Draco: The Dragon


Draco, The Dragon

Draco as depicted by Johann Bayer in his Uranometria (1624). Source image provided by www.RareMaps.com — Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps Inc.

Draco Constellation Profile
Abbreviation: Dra Genitive: Draconis Origin: Ancient
Location: Northern Hemisphere Size/Area: 1083 sq. deg. Size Rank: 8
On Meridian: 9pm July 20th Best View (North): Spring Best View (South):
Bordering Constellations: Ursa Minor, Camelopardalis, Ursa Major, Bootes, Hercules, Lyra, Cygnus, Cepheus


The Myth Behind the Constellation Draco

Draco, “The Dragon” has been said to represent a number of scaly beasts.  Most frequently he is considered to be Ladon, the dragon that guarded the tree that was the goal of Hercules’ eleventh labor.  This tree produced golden apples and had been given to Hera as a wedding gift.  Hercules’ labor was to bring some of the fruit back to King Eurystheus.  In one version of the story Hercules uses one of his poison arrows to defeat the dragon.

Draco Constellation Points of Interest

Interesting stars and objects.

Bright Stars in Draco

These are the stars in Draco with a minimum magnitude of 3.0.

Name Bayer Name Magnitude Color Luminosity Distance
Eltamin Gamma Draconis 2.24  Orange 471 suns 148 ly
Aldibain Eta Draconis 2.73  Orange 60 suns 88 ly
Rastaban Beta Draconis 2.79  Yellow 1,183 suns 361 ly