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Constellation Serpens (Serpent)

Constellation Serpens (Serpent)

Southern Hemisphere Northern Hemisphere




The peculiarity of the constellation Serpent (lat. Serpens) is that it consists of two elongated star chains interrupted by Ophiuchus. In the eastern part you may see the head of the Serpent, which is represented by a triangle. It is one of the 48 constellations of antiquity.

How to spot Serpens

Serpens covers an area of 637 square degrees. Together with Ophiuchus an area of 1,585 square degrees is covered, so the two connected constellations are even larger than the single largest constellation Hydra. Serpens can be seen in both hemispheres, preferably in summer. Near the constellation are the Corona Borealis, Virgo and Hercules.


According to ancient mythology, the constellation is the serpent that helped the physician Asclepius bring the dead back to life. He watched as the snakes revived each other with herbs and applied those to the dead son of King Minos. This displeased the God of the underworld, Hades, who asked his brother Zeus to end the life of Asclepius. Zeus granted Hades this request and had the doctor killed by an arrow of a barbaric centaur. To appease Apollo, Zeus placed Asclepios as Ophiuchus with the serpent in the sky.

Even today, the symbol of healing is represented by the Aesculapius with a serpent.