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Orion

Orion

Orion was a giant hunter in Greek mythology. Some stories say he was the son of Zeus*, Poseidon*, or Hermes*. Others claim that he was born from a bull's hide that was buried after the king of Boeotia urinated on it.

Orion went to the island of Chios, where King Oenopion asked him to drive all the wild beasts from the land. In return, Oenopion promised Orion his daughter Merope in marriage. However, the king later refused to honor the agreement. Orion got drunk and raped Merope, and Oenopion blinded him. After recovering his vision, Orion went to Crete to live and hunt with the goddess Artemis*.

There are several accounts of his death. One story says that Eos, the goddess of the dawn, fell in love with Orion and that Artemis killed him out of jealousy. According to another version, Orion and Artemis were considering marriage, but she was tricked into killing him by her brother Apollo*. In still another myth, Orion pursued seven sisters known as the Pleiades. To save them from Orion's attentions, Zeus turned them into stars. Orion, too, became a constellation, which appears to chase the Pleiades through the heavens.

See also Pleiades.

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Orion (in Greek mythology)

Orion (ōrī´ən), in Greek mythology, Boeotian hunter. When Oenopion delayed giving his daughter Merope to him, Orion, when drunk, violated her. Oenopion then blinded him, but his vision was restored by the rays of the sun. The story of Orion's death has many versions. Some state he offended Artemis, who killed him. Others say that he became her favorite hunting companion, but offended Apollo, who loosed a giant scorpion to chase Orion into the sea. Apollo then tricked Artemis into shooting Orion. When she discovered what she had done, she gave way to her grief and immortalized her companion and the scorpion by placing them in the heavens as constellations.

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Orion

O·ri·on / əˈrīən/ 1. Greek Mythol. a giant and hunter who was changed into a constellation at his death. 2. Astron. a conspicuous constellation (the Hunter), said to represent a hunter holding a club and shield. It lies on the celestial equator and contains many bright stars, including Rigel, Betelgeuse, and a line of three that form Orion's belt. ∎  [as genitive] (O·ri·o·nis / ˌôrēˈōnis/ ) used with a preceding letter or numeral to designate a star in this constellation: the multiple star Theta Orionis.

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Orion

Orion in Greek mythology, a giant and hunter who was changed into a constellation at his death. His association with the constellation is very early, being mentioned in Homer.

The constellation itself, said to represent a hunter holding a club and shield, lies on the celestial equator and contains many bright stars, including a line of three that form Orion's Belt. Orion's hound is another name for the Dog Star.

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Orion

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