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How Do You Say That? The May Camelopardalids Meteor Shower
May 20, 2014

Growing excitement about a possible new meteor shower on May 23-24 has everyone talking about a new name: the May Camelopardalids. This begs the question, "What's a Camelopardalid?"

The word originates from Latin: kamēlos (or camel) and pardalis (or leopard). The result is a camel-leopard creature with a long neck and lots of spots -- which we affectionately know as the giraffe. Camelopardalis, a large and dim constellation in the northern sky, is named for its many faint stars that resemble the spots of a giraffe.[image-36]

So how dow you say this jawbreaker of a word? Here are some possibilities we've heard:

Option A: May CameloPARdalids   .mp3
Option B: May CameloparDALids  .mp3
Option C: Giraffids (hey, why not?)  .mp3

Do you prefer A, B, or C? Let us know in the comments below, or you can weigh in on the Marshall Space Flight Center Facebook page or Twitter channel. Use hashtag #camelopardalids.


› Back to the May Camelopardalids Chat/Ustream page

Illustration of the night skies, showing the position of Camelopardalis, or the Giraffe
The May Camelopardalid radiant is in the constellation Camelopardalis (NASA/MEO/D. Moser using Starry Night Pro)
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Graphic of constellation Camelopardalis
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Page Last Updated: May 20th, 2014
Page Editor: Brooke Boen