Week 37  -  9.9.12 - 9.15.12  -  Gemini

Materials:   Copper, Sterling Silver, Fine Silver, Synthetic Emerald

Ring Dimensions:   1.15” H x 1.71” W x .174” D

Gemini lies between Taurus to the west and Cancer to the east. It was one of the 48 constellations described by the 2nd century AD astronomer Ptolemy and it remains one of the 88 modern constellations today. Its name is Latin for ‘twins’ and it is associated with the twins Castor and Pollux in Greek mythology. By mid August, Gemini will appear along the eastern horizon in the morning sky prior to sunrise. The best time to observe Gemini at night is overhead during the months of January and February. By April and May, the constellation will be visible soon after sunset in the west. The easiest way to locate the constellation is to find its two brightest stars Castor and Pollux, eastward from the familiar ‘V’ shaped asterism of Taurus and the three stars of Orion’s Belt.

Those personalities born between May 21st and June 20th are in the third sign of the zodiac. This mutable, air sign exhibits fluent communication skills with an incessant desire for new ideas and contacts. However, without developing the trait of persistence, they might become well versed and eloquent in many different subjects, but never actually develop a specialist area. Gemini are likely to be skilled at socializing and fit the description of ‘social butterfly’. They features a complex personality ruled by Mercury, and ‘mercurial’ describes much of their behavior. They may have been hyperactive as a child, and as adults, still retain a capricious and restless side. Freedom loving and easily bored, Gemini are drawn to live in the present and can be something of a spendthrift. The trait of ‘change for the sake of it’ may also apply. Gemini tend to be quick learners and good with technology and many younger Gemini have an amusing habit of explaining everything around them. Humor and witty banter come naturally, although if taken too far, may intimidate others who are less quick on the verbal draw. A recurring feature of Gemini is the love of meeting new people and learning from their experience. On the negative side, the Gemini inquisitive nature can skirt the bounds of nosiness.

Gemini is identified with the twin brothers Castor and Pollux in Greek mythology and are known collectively as the Dioscuri or ‘Sons of Zeus’. Their mother was Leda, Queen of Sparta, whom Zeus visited one day in the form of a swan (now represented by the constellation Cygnus). That same night she also slept with her husband, King Tyndareus. Leda subsequently gave birth to four children. Pollux and Helen (later to become Helen of Troy) were the immortal children of Zeus, while Castor and Clytemnestra were the mortal children of King Tyndareus. Castor and Pollux grew up as the closest of friends and were said to look alike and dress alike. The two twins joined the expedition of Jason and the Argonauts in search of the golden fleece. On the Argonauts homeward trip, Castor and Pollux were said to have been the saviors of the crew in an event involving a storm. It is said that Poseidon, the sea god, gave the twins the power to save shipwrecked sailors. Mariners believed that during storms at sea, the twins appear in a ship’s rigging in the form of the electrical phenomenon known as St Elmo’s Fire. Castor and Pollux clashed with another pair of twins, Idas and Lynceus, over two beautiful women. Idas and Lynceus (also members of the Argo’s crew) were engaged to Phoebe and Hilaira but Castor and Pollux carried them off. Idas and Lynceus gave pursuit and the two sets of twins fought. Castor was run through by a sword thrust from Lynceus, whereupon Pollux killed him. Idas attacked Pollux but was repulsed by a thunderbolt from Zeus. Pollux grieved for his fallen brother and asked Zeus that the two should share immortality. Zeus placed them both in the sky as the constellation Gemini, inseparable to the last.