Twin City Amateur Astronomers
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Virgo is a large constellation visible in the early evening during the late spring months. One of the twelve Zodiac constellations, Virgo lies across the ecliptic and the Sun passes through between September 16 and October 31. In mythology, Virgo is associated with several myths. In one, she is Astaea, the goddess of purity and innocence who was the last to abandon mankind in the Iron Age. In another story, she is Atalanta, the only woman traveling on the Argo with Jason on his quest for the Golden Fleece. In another tale, Virgo is recognized as Ceres the goddess of corn, who is also known as Demeter, holding an ear of corn (represented by bright star Spica) in her left hand. When her beautiful daughter Proserpine was seen and abducted by Pluto, the god of the Underworld. Ceres was so distraught in her extended search of the missing daughter abandoned her fields and all the crops failed. Jupiter intervened so that Proserpine could spend six months of the year with Ceres during the spring and summer, but must return to Pluto for the rest of the time. It is said that from this arrangement that the seasons were born.