Chinese star maps

Chinese star maps

Chinese star maps (Chinese: 星圖) are usually directional or graphical representations of Chinese astronomical alignments. Throughout the history of China, numerous star maps have been recorded. This page is intended to list or show the best available version of each star map. Star catalogues are also listed. For academic purposes, related star maps outside the China in East Asia are also listed.


List of Star Maps

Map or Catalog Creator Time Created Contents links
M45 (伏羲星图) c. 4000 B.C. Found in a mural in a Neolithic Grave in Henan Puyang (河南濮陽西水坡新石器時代古墓) clam shells arranged in the shape of Big Dipper in the North (北斗) and below the foot, Tiger in the West and Azure Dragon in the East. Also showing Five Stars. [citation needed]
Wu Xian Star Map
Wu Xian c. 1000 BC Contained 44 Central and Outer constellations totalling 141 stars [citation needed]
Warring States Period grave lacquer box
c. 5th Century BC Indicated location of Big Dipper and 28 Constellations by characters [1]
Astronomic star observation
Gan De (甘德) 475-221 B.C. Contained 75 Central Constellation and 42 Outer Constellations, some said 510 stars in 18 Constellations [citation needed]
Shi Shen astronomy
aka. (石氏星经)
Shi Shen (石申) c. 350 B.C. 138 Constellations and the name of 810 stars, location of 121 stars, some said it contains The 28 Lunar Ecliptic Constellations, 62 Central Constellations and 30 Outer Constellations [citation needed]
Han Comet Diagrams
193 BC Different 29 different types of comets, also record and prediction of positions of Jupiter, Saturn, and Venus during 246-177 B.C. [2]
Five Star Prediction Device
168 BC Also an Equatorial Device [citation needed]
Equatorial Armillary Sphere
Luo Xiahong (落下閎) 104 BC 西漢武帝時 lost [citation needed]
Celestial Globe
Geng Shouchang (耿壽昌) 52 BC 甘露二年 lost [citation needed]
First remark of a constellation in observation in Korean history 49 BC 혁거세 거서간 9년 The star 'Pae'(a kind of comet) appeared in the constellation Wang Rang Samguk Sagi
First Ecliptic Armillary Sphere
Jia Gui 贾逵 30-101 AD 东汉永元十五年 - -
Han Grave Mural Star Chart
c. 1st Century Sun, Moon and ten other star charts [3]
Han Dynasty Nanyang Stone Engraving
c. 1st Century Depicted five stars forming a cross [4]
Eastern Han Celestial Globe and star maps
Zhang Heng (张衡) 117 AD - -
Sky Map
Hun Tian Yi Shuo
Lu Ji (陆绩) 187-219 AD 三国 - -
Reproduced Hun Tian Yi
and wrote
Hun Tian Xiang Shuo
Wang Fan 王蕃 227-266 AD 三国 - -
Whole Sky Star Maps
Chen Zhuo (陳卓) c. 270 AD 西晉初 A Unified Constellation System. Star maps containing 1464 stars in 284 Constellations, written astrology text -
Equatorial Armillary Sphere
Kong Ting (孔挺) 323 AD 東晉 前趙光初六年 level being used in this kind of device -
Northern Wei Period Iron Armillary Sphere
Hu Lan (斛蘭) 436-440 AD 北魏 level being used in this kind of device -
Southern Dynasties Period Whole Sky Planetarium
Qian Lezhi (錢樂之) 443 AD 南朝劉宋元嘉年間 used red, black and white to differentiate stars from different star maps from Shi Shen, Gan De and Wu Xian 甘, 石, 巫三家星 -
Northern Wei Grave Dome Star Map
526 AD 北魏孝昌二年 about 300 stars, including the Big Dipper, some stars are linked by straight lines to form constellation. The Milky Way is also shown. [5]
Water-powered Planetarium
Geng Xun (耿詢) c. 7th Century 隋初 - -
Lingtai Miyuan
Yu Jicai (庾季才) and Zhou Fen (周墳) 604 AD 隋 incorporated star maps from different sources -
Tang Dynasty Whole Sky Ecliptic Armillary Sphere
Li Chunfeng 李淳風 667 AD 貞觀七年 including Elliptic and Moon orbit, in addition to old equatorial design -
The Dunhuang star map
705-710 AD 1,585 stars grouped into 257 clusters or "asterisms" [6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][2]
Turfan Tomb Star Mural
250-799 AD 唐 28 Constellations, Milkyway and Five Stars [16][17]
Picture of Fuxi and Nüwa 新疆阿斯達那唐墓伏羲女媧像 Tang Dynasty Picture of Fuxi and Nuwa together with some constellations [3]
Image:Nuva fuxi.gif
Tang Dynasty Armillary Sphere
Yixing Monk 一行和尚 (张遂) and Liang Lingzan 梁令瓚 683-727 AD based on Han Dynasty Celestial Globe, recalibrated locations of 150 stars, determined that stars are moving
Tang Dynasty Indian Horoscope Chart
Yixing Priest 一行和尚 (张遂) 683-727 AD simple diagrams of the 28 Constellation [5]
Kitora Kofun 法隆寺 キトラ古墳 in Japan c. late 7th Century - early 8th Century Detailed whole sky map [18][19][20][21]
Treatise on Astrology of the Kaiyuan Era
Gautama Siddha 713 AD - Collection of the three old star charts from Shi Shen, Gan De and Wu Xian. One of the most renowned collection recognized academically. -
Big Dipper
- showing stars in Big Dipper [22]
Prajvalonisa Vjrabhairava Padvinasa-sri-dharani Scroll found in Japan 熾盛光佛頂大威德銷災吉祥陀羅尼經卷首扉畫 972 AD 北宋開寶五年 Chinese 28 Constellations and Western Zodiac -
Tangut Khara-Khoto (The Black City) Star Map 西夏黑水城星圖 940 AD A typical Qian Lezhi Style Star Map -
Star Chart 五代吳越文穆王前元瓘墓石刻星象圖 941-960 AD - [6]
Ancient Star Map 先天图 by 陈抟 c. 11th Century 宋 Perhaps based on studying of Puyong Ancient Star Map Lost
Song Dynasty Bronze Armillary Sphere 北宋至道銅渾儀 Han Xianfu 韓顯符 1006 AD 宋道元年十二月 Similar to the Simplified Armillary by Kong Ting 孔挺, 晁崇 Chao Cong, 斛蘭 Hu Lan -
Song Dynasty Bronze Armillary Sphere 北宋天文院黄道渾儀 Shu Yijian 舒易簡, Yu Yuan 于渊, Zhou Cong 周琮 宋皇祐年中 Similar to the Armillary by Tang Dynasty Liang Lingzan 梁令瓚 and Yi Xing 一行 -
Song Dynasty Armillary Sphere 北宋簡化渾儀 Shen Gua 沈括 and Huangfu Yu 皇甫愈 1089 AD 熙寧七年 Simplied version of Tang Dynasty Device, removed the rarely used moon orbit. -
Five Star Charts (新儀象法要) Su Song 蘇頌 1094 AD 1464 stars grouped into 283 asterisms [7]
Image:Su Song Star Map 1.JPG
Image:Su Song Star Map 2.JPG
Song Dynasty Water-powered Planetarium 宋代 水运仪象台 Su Song 蘇頌 and Han Gonglian 韩公廉 c. 11th Century - [8]
Liao Dynasty Tomb Dome Star Map 遼宣化张世卿墓頂星圖 1116 AD 遼天庆六年 shown both the Chinese 28 Constellation encircled by Babylonian Zodiac [10]
Star Map in a woman's grave (江西德安 南宋周氏墓星相图) 1127-1279 AD Milky Way and 57 other stars. [12]
Hun Tian Yi Tong Xing Xiang Quan Tu, Suzhou Star Chart (蘇州石刻天文圖),淳祐天文図 Huang Shang (黃裳) created in 1193, etched to stone in 1247 by Wang Zhi Yuan 王致遠 1434 Stars grouped into 280 Asterisms in Northern Sky map [13]
Yuan Dynasty Simplified Armillary Sphere 元代簡儀 Kuo Shojin 郭守敬 1276-1279 Further simplied version of Song Dynasty Device [18]
Japanese Star Chart 格子月進図 1324 Similar to Su Song Star Chart, original burned in air raids during World War II, only pictures left. Reprinted in 1984 by 佐佐木英治
天象列次分野之図(Cheonsang Yeolcha Bunyajido) 1395 Korean versions of Star Map in Stone. It was made in Chosun Dynasty and the constellation names were written in Chinese letter. The constellations as this was found in Japanese later. Contained 1,464 stars. [19]
Japanese Star Chart 瀧谷寺 天之図 c. 14-15 Century 室町中期以前 -
Korean King Sejong's Armillary sphere 1433 - [22]
Star Chart Mao Kun 茅坤 c. 1422 Polaris compared with Southern Cross and Alpha Centauri zh:郑和航海图
Korean Tomb c. Late 14th Century Big Dipper [24]
Ming Ancient Star Chart 北京隆福寺(古星圖) c. 1453 明代 1420 Stars, possibly based on old star maps from Tang Dynasty [25]
Chanshu Star Chart (明常熟石刻天文圖) 1506 Based on Suzhou Star Chart, Northern Sky observed at 36.8 degrees North Latitude, 1466 stars grouped into 284 asterism -
Ming Dynasty Star Map (渾蓋通憲圖說) Matteo Ricci 利玛窦[26], recorded by Li Zhizao 李之藻 c. 1550 - [27]
Tian Wun Tu (天问图) Siao Yun Cong 萧云从 c. 1600 Contained mapping of 12 constellations and 12 animals [28]
Zhou Tian Xuan Ji Tu (周天璇玑图) and He He Si Xiang Tu (和合四象圖) in Xing Ming Guei Zhi (性命圭旨) by 尹真人高第弟子 published by 余永宁 1615 Drawings of Armillary Sphere and four Chinese Celestial Animals with some notes. Related to Taoism. [29]
Korean Astronomy Book "Selected and Systematized Astronomy Notes" 天文類抄 1623~1649 Contained some star maps [31]
Ming Dynasty General Star Map (赤道南北兩總星圖) Xu Kuangci 徐光啟 and Adam Schall von Bell 湯若望 1634 - [33]
Ming Dynasty diagrams of Armillary spheres and Celestial Globes Xu Kuangci 徐光啟 c. 1699 -
Ming Dynasty Planetarium Machine (渾象) c. 17th Century Ecliptic, Equator, and dividers of 28 constellation [34]
Copper Plate Star Map stored in Korea 1652 順治九年 - [35]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天象列次之図 based on 天象列次分野之図 from Korean Harumi Shibukawa 渋川春海(保井春海) 1670 寛文十年 - [36]
The Celestial Globe 清康熙 天體儀 Ferdinand Verbiest 南懷仁 1673 1876 stars grouped into 282 asterisms [37]
Picture depicted Song Dynasty fictional astronomer (呉用 Wu Yong) with a Celestial Globe (天體儀) Japanese painter 1675 showing top portion of a Celestial Globe File:Chinese astronomer 1675.jpg
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天文分野之図 Harumi Shibukawa 渋川春海 (保井春海) 1677 延宝五年 - [39]
Korean star map in stone 1687 - [41]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天文図解 井口常範 1689 元禄2年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 古暦便覧備考 苗村丈伯 1692 元禄5年 - -
Japanese star chart Harumi Yasui written in Chinese 1699 AD A Japanese star chart of 1699 showing lunar stations [42]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天文成象 (渋川昔尹) (保井昔尹) 1699 元禄十二年 including Stars from Wu Shien (44 Constellation, 144 stars) in yellow; Gan De (118 Constellations, 511 stars) in black; Shi Shen (138 Constellations, 810 stars) in red and Harumi Shibukawa (61 Constellations, 308 stars) in blue; [45]
Japanese Star Chart 改正天文図説 unknown Included stars from Harumi Shibukawa [48]
Korean Star Map Stone c. 17th Century - [49]
Korean Star Map c. 17th Century - [50]
Ceramic Ink Sink Cover c. 17th Century Showing Big Dipper [51]
Korean Star Map Cube 方星圖 Italian Missionary Philippus Maria Grimardi 閔明我 (1639~1712) c. early 18 Century - [52]
Star Chart preserved in Japan based on a book from China 天経或問 Yu Zilio 游子六 1730 AD 江戸時代 享保15年 A Northern Sky Chart in Chinese [53]
Star Chart 清蒙文石刻(欽天監繪製天文圖) in Mongolia 1727-1732 AD 1550 stars grouped into 270 starisms. [54]
Korean Star Maps, North and South to the Eclliptic 黃道南北恒星圖 1742 - [55]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天経或問註解図巻 下 入江脩敬 1750 寛延3年 - -
Reproduction of an ancient device 璇璣玉衡 Dai Zhen 戴震 1723-1777 AD based on ancient record and his own interpretation Could be similar to [56]
Rock Star Chart 清代天文石 c. 18th Century A Star Chart and general Astronomy Text [57]
Korean Complete Star Map (渾天全圖) c. 18th Century - [58]
Qing Dynasty Star Catalog (儀象考成,仪象考成)恒星表 and Star Map 黄道南北両星総図 允禄 and Ignatius Kogler 戴进贤戴進賢, a German Device made in 1744, book completed in 1757 清乾隆年间 300 Constellations and 3083 Stars. Referenced Star Catalogue published by John Flamsteed [60]
Jingban Tianwen Quantu by Ma Junliang 马俊良 1780-90 AD mapping nations to the sky [61]
Japanese Edo period Illustration of a Star Measuring Device 平天儀図解 岩橋善兵衛 1802 享和二年 - The device could be similar to [62]?
North Sky Map 清嘉庆年间(黄道中西合图) Xu Choujun 徐朝俊 1807 AD More than 1000 stars and the 28 consellation [64]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天象総星之図 朝野北水 1814 文化十一年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 新制天球星象記 田中政均 1815 文化十二年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天球図 坂部廣胖 1816 文化十三年 - -
Chinese Star map John Reeves esq 1819 AD Printed map showing Chinese names of stars and constellations [66]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 昊天図説詳解 佐藤祐之 1824 文政七年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 星図歩天歌 小島好謙 and 鈴木世孝 1824 文政七年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 鈴木世孝 1824 文政七年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天象管鈔 天体図 (天文星象図解) 長久保赤水 1824 文政七年 - [67]
Japanese Edo period Star Measuring Device 中星儀 足立信順 1824 文政七年 - -
Japanese Star Map 天象一覧図 in Kanji 桜田虎門 1824 AD 文政7年 Printed map showing Chinese names of stars and constellations [68]
Korean Star Map 天象列次分野之図 in Kanji c. 19th Century Printed map showing Chinese names of stars and constellations [69]


Korean Star Map c. 19th Century, late Choson Period - [72]
Korean Star maps: Star Map South to the Ecliptic 黃道南恒星圖 and Star Map South to the Ecliptic 黃道北恒星圖 c. 19th Century Perhaps influenced by Adam Schall von Bell湯若望 (1591-1666) and P. Ignatius Koegler 戴進賢 (1680-1748) [73]
Korean Complete map of the celestial sphere (渾天全圖) c. 19th Century - [75]
Korean Book of Stars 經星 c. 19th Century Several star maps [76]
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 方円星図,方圓星図 and 増補分度星図方図 石坂常堅 1826b文政9年 - -  
Japanese Star Chart 伊能忠誨 c. 19th Century - -  
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 天球図説 古筆源了材 1835 天保6年 - -
Qing Dynasty Star Catalog (儀象考成續編)星表 1844 Appendix to Yi Xian Kao Cheng, listed 3240 stars (added 163, removed 6) [77]
Stars map (恒星赤道経緯度図)stored in Japan 1844 道光24年 or 1848 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 経緯簡儀用法 藤岡有貞 1845 弘化2年 - -
Japanese Edo period Star Chart 分野星図 高塚福昌, 阿部比輔, 上条景弘 1849 嘉永2年 - -
Japanese Late Edo period Star Chart 天文図屏風 遠藤盛俊 late Edo Period 江戸時代後期 - -
Japanese Star Chart 天体図 三浦梅園 - - -
Japanese Star Chart 梅園星図 高橋景保 - - [78]
Korean Book of New Song of the Sky Pacer 新法步天歌 李俊養 1862 Star maps and a revised version of the Song of Sky Pacer [79]
Stars South of Equator, Stars North of Equator (赤道南恆星圖,赤道北恆星圖) 1875~1908 清末光緒年間 Similar to Ming Dynasty General Star Map [80]
Fuxi 64 gua 28 xu wood carving 天水市卦台山伏羲六十四卦二十八宿全图 modern - -
Korean Map of Heaven and Earth 天地圖 c. 19th Century 28 Constellations and geographic map [81]
Korean version of 28 Constellation 列宿圖 c. 19th Century 28 Constellations, some named differently from their Chinese counterparts [82]
Korean Star Chart 渾天図 朴? - - -
Star Chart in a Dao Temple 玉皇山道觀星圖 1940 AD - -
Simplified Chinese and Western Star Map Yi Shi Tong 伊世同 Aug. 1963 Star Map showing Chinese Xingquan and Western Constellation boundaries [83]
Sky Map Yu Xi Dao Ren 玉溪道人 1987 Star Map with captions [86]
The Chinese Sky during the Han Constellating Stars and Society Sun Xiaochun and Jacob Kistemaker 1997 AD An attempt to recreate night sky seen by Chinese 2000 years ago [87]
Star map Recent An attempt by a Japanese to reconstruct the night sky for a historical event around 235 AD 秋風五丈原 [88]
Star maps Recent Chinese 28 Constellation with Chinese and Japanese captions [89]
SinoSky Beta 2.0 2002 A computer program capable of showing Chinese Xingguans alongside with western constellations, lists about 700 stars with Chinese names. [90]
AEEA Star maps Modern Good reconstruction and explanation of Chinese constellations [91]
Wikipedia Star maps Modern - zh:華蓋星
28 Constellations, big dipper and 4 symbols Star map Modern - [94]
Collection of printed star maps Modern - [95]
28 Xu Star map and catalog - Modern Stars around ecliptic [96]
HNSKY Korean/Chinese Supplement Jeong, Tae-Min(jtm71)/Chuang_Siau_Chin Modern Korean supplement is based on CheonSangYeulChaBunYaZiDo (B.C.100 ~ A.D.100) [97]
Stellarium Chinese and Korean Sky Culture G.S.K. Lee; Jeong, Tae-Min(jtm71); Yu-Pu Wang (evanzxcv) Modern Major Xingguans and Star names [98]
修真內外火侯全圖 Huo Hou Tu 席春生 重繪 2005 redrawn, original unknown illustrations of Milkyway and star maps, Chinese constellations in Taoism view [101]
Star Map with illustrations for Xingguans 坐井★观星 Modern illustrations for cylindrical and circular polar maps [102]
Sky in Google Earth KML Modern Attempts to show Chinese Star Maps on Google Earth [106]

See also

External links

List of Japanese Star Charts from 17th - 19th Century and their storage locations. Also listed are some copies of Chinese Star Maps.


  1. ^ New york edu
  2. ^ (Chinese) 汉代彗星图
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ International Dunhuang
  7. ^
  8. ^ Dunhuang Caves In China - Crystalinks
  9. ^
  10. ^ AEEA ¤Ñ¤å±Ð¨|¸ê°Tºô
  11. ^
  12. ^ [1]
  13. ^ Mapping the Sky
  14. ^ AEEA ¤Ñ¤å±Ð¨|¸ê°Tºô
  15. ^ Star Charts and Maps - 星图 - Chinese Astronomy - 中国天文学
  16. ^ Tulufang
  17. ^ tulufang2
  18. ^ kitora
  19. ^ kitchtb
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^ Big dipper Taiwan

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