Intro and Visual description
Partially visible during early October low in the south from 35 degrees north latitude.
Ankaa (Alpha-Phoenicis), halfway between Achernar (Eridanus) and Formalhaut (Southern Fish). Orange, 78 LY. Magnitude 2.4.
Origin and History
One of the eleven southern constellations created by Pieter Dirksz Keyser and Frederick de Houtman in 1596. These were published in Plate Aaa of Johann Bayer, Uranographia (1603).
Skylore, Literature and Culture
Phoenix is one of four birds in the southern skies (cf. Pavo the Peacock, Grus the Crane, and Tucana the Toucan).
The mythical Phoenix would end its life in a burning conflagration, only to rise once more from its ashes and live again.