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New zodiac sign not yet official
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Published : Jan 18, 2011 - 11:50
Updated : Jan 18, 2011 - 11:50
News of a 13th zodiac sign may be better viewed as an astronomer’s personal suggestion rather than an official change made by an internationally recognized astronomical organization.

Astronomer Parke Kunkle of the Minnesota Planetarium Society has promoted the new sign, named Ophiuchus. 

Astronomer Parke Kunkle talks with a reporter about the changing astrological signs in his office in Minneapolis. Kunkle told a newspaper interviewer that the Earth's wobbly orbit means it's no longer aligned to the stars in the same way as when the signs of the zodiac were first conceived. (AP-Yonhap News)


But Korea Astronomy & Space Science Institute press relations manager Sul Ah-chim said on Monday that the sign had not yet been made official.

“The International Astronomical Union, an internationally recognized body regarding astronomical matters, hasn’t made an official announcement on the change of zodiac signs,” Sul said.

“(If zodiac signs were to change) the decision should be made by the official body. For now, the news about the introduction of the 13th zodiac sign has originated from an astronomer, therefore, it’s more like his personal suggestion, not an official decision by the union,” he added.

He explained that the last date of one sign and the first date of the next overlap because the time of transition has been set as noon, not midnight. It means that people born in the morning and the afternoon of the same day can have different zodiac signs.

The new sign seems to raise further questions as the 13 signs do not fit into 12 months.

Meanwhile, the new sign has created a buzz on the Internet. People are trying to figure out whether their star sign has changed and some are raising doubts about the credibility of the news.

According to news reports, the twelve zodiac signs, which have been followed for almost 3,000 years, changed last week.

The position of the Earth in relation to the Sun has gradually altered since the Babylonians determined the dates of the zodiac, ABC News reported.

The shifting of the Earth’s axis has therefore led to the introduction of a 13th zodiac sign -- Ophiuchus.

The Huffington Post reported that astronomer Parke Kunkle, who spoke to NBC regarding the issue, explained that the Earth and the Sun have slowly moved, causing the alteration in the signs.

By Lee Woo-young (wylee@heraldcorp.com)


<한글 요약> 

13번째 별자리 아직 공식 확정되지는 않아


13번째 별자리의 등장은 미국의 한 천문학자의 개인적인 주장이며, 아직 공식적으로 결정된 것은 아니라고 한국천문연구원이 밝혔다. 

한국천문연구원 설아침 홍보팀장은 코리아헤럴드와의 인터뷰에서 국제천문연맹이 아직 13번째 별자리에 대해 공식적인 입장을 밝힌바 없으며, 13번째 별자리 소개는 천문학자의 개인적인 제안으로 본다고 말했다. 

그러나 이번 주장이 근거 없는 주장은 아니며, 다만 공식적으로 받아들여지기 위해서는 국제천문연맹의 협의와 결정이 필요하다고 한다. 

또한 별자리의 마지막 날짜와 첫 번째 날짜가 겹치는 이유로는 별자리 구분 시간이 자정이 아닌 정오일 가능성이 있다고 추측했다. 그러나 13개의 별자리가 12달에 맞춰지는 문제는 좀 더 확인이 필요하다고 말했다. 

한편, 전갈자리와 사수자리 사이에 들어간 새로운 뱀주인자리 등장은 인터넷에서 급속도로 전파되면서 네티즌에 의해 폭발적인 관심을 받았다. 

현재 12궁도 별자리는 고대 바빌로니아에서 결정된 이후로 지금까지 쓰이고 있으나 그 이후 지구의 자전축 이후로 별자리가 바뀌게 되었다고 외신은 보도했다.



<관련기사>

Give me back my sign! Horoscope readers atwitter
내 별자리 돌려줘! 사람들의 반응은?

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