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Listening to……

January 4, 2010

Rediscovering our Muses by Tracy Marks

House of the Muse – Heather Blakey

Invoking the Muse – Layne Redmond

The Muse on my Couch

Urania has been my Muse since I was a child and became fascinated with astronomy.  I recall clearly pondering the magnitude of the Universe and my place within it as I pored over pictures and studied the constellations.  In High School, I even presented a talk about the first Lunar Mission, complete with photographs acquired from the Melbourne Museum; yet curiously I wasn’t into science-fiction or the original Star Trek.

That changed.

I was astonished to discover, only last year, that several of my maternal ancestors in the 18th Century were astronomers with fully-equipped, then state-of-the-art observatories in their backyards.

I had a cubby-house in mine! 

And an oak tree.

My star-gazing ancestors were Quakers and Fellows of the Royal Astronomical Society.

They lived near St. Bees in Cumbria, England.

Who is Urania?

I am Urania, the muse of astronomy and, in times past, of astrology. I am tasked with raising human thoughts from that on which you stand, the Earth below you, to that which lies above you, the star-filled sky. Look to the heavens and you will see my domain where I offer you peace and harmony.

Urania means “heavenly” or sky, but I am known by many names and to many peoples. I am also called Aprodites Urania, meaning celestial Venus, and Mylitta, Ashera or Astaroth, Alilat, and Artimpara.

I am the daughter of Sky and Light, fathered by Zeus, king of the gods, and was born of Mnemosyne, goddess of memory. With my eight sisters, we oversee the liberal arts from our home atop Parnassus and exalt the victory of the Olympians over the Titans. Apollo, he who leads the Muses, is my husband and father to my son, Linus.

My name has survived the passing of ages and is still in your minds and hearts. Astronomical observatories bear my name, as well as the first sky atlas of the entire celestial sphere, Uranometria, which is still in use today.

So, my dear mortal, I encourage you, nay, I urge you to go out under the night sky and look overhead. There you will find me, Urania, in the magnificence of the heavens above you, where I offer you peace and tranquility.

(Source: The Woman Astronomer)

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4 comments

  1. Ho… lee.. O_O

    This is my first stop this morning because of what yesterday’s magnificent textile post did to me and I wanted to “blame”/thank you and now… this. Why? Because MY MUSE was a very chatty lady last night! She kept me up ’til past 2 and then kept interrupting all night long, helping me design a fashion-centric tarot deck 🙂


  2. Astronomy must be in your genes! I have that album by Loreena McKennitt too. She’s great. Layne Redmond too.


  3. Two words for you Submerina – “BELLE EPOQUE”.

    Last year, I had a discussion with my Muse about ‘union hours’, etiquette and time zones; she flipped me the bird.


  4. Oh, ABSOLUTELY on the Belle Epoque, especially with the wonderful illustration side of things. Your muse sounds like she has something of an “attitude problem” 😀 I don’t dare complain, no matter how broken I am today; she visits irregularly enough as it is.



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