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Bright star near moon on June 4 is Regulus

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Tonight for June 4, 2014

That bright star shining in the vicinity of the waxing crescent moon on the evening of June 4, 2014 is Regulus, the brightest star in the constellation of Leo the Lion. Regulus is also known as one of the four Royal Stars: Regulus, Antares, Fomalhaut and Aldebaran. Each Royal Star marks its particular quadrant of the heavens.

Regulus ranks as the greatest Royal Star, possibly because it’s the only bright star to reside almost squarely on the ecliptic – the Earth’s orbital plane projected onto the sphere of stars. In fact, the sun has its annual conjunction with this star on or near August 23. That’s about five months after the March equinox and one month before the September equinox.

What is the ecliptic?

Two years ago, in 2012, Regulus reached a place on the Zodiac where it was precisely 150o east of the March equinox point (and 30o west of the September equinox point). Before that juncture, Regulus and the March equinox point were a little less than 150o apart, and Regulus and the September equinox point were a little more than 30o apart. For some astrologers, this instant at which Regulus was precisely 30o west of the September equinox point marked the end of the Age of Pisces and the beginning of the Age of Aquarius. Click here to find out why.

Whether you enjoy the arcane speculation on the Royal Star Regulus and the Age of Aquarius – or not – that star near tonight’s moon has visually given definition to the ecliptic and the Zodiac since time immemorial!

When does the Age of Aquarius begin?

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Leo? Here’s your constellation