Thuban is a forth magnitude star located in the constellation Draco or the Dragon. It is the Alpha star of this constellation and is thought to have been much brighter thousands of years ago, as it is very faint today. It was the Pole Star (or North Star) during the time of ancient Egyptian civilizations, around 2700 B.C., due to the fact that the celestial north pole slowly moves in a circle. Today, the North Star is Polaris.

The name itself has been said to mean Serpent or Dragon in the original Arabic, but more specifically, the Arabic phrase meaning "the Serpent's (or Dragon's) Head", which is ironic considering the star is in the Dragon's tail. It has also been known as the "Judge of Heaven" and can be seen from the bottom of the central passage of the Great Pyramid of Cheops (or Khufu).

It is among a rare class of hot giant stars and is about 260 times more luminous than the Sun. It's forth magnitude status is a result of its rather large distance of 310 light years. It has ceased hydrogen fusion in its core and has begun to die. To find Thuban in the sky, look down the length of the Little Dipper and jump to the end of the handle of the Big Dipper - midway is found a very faint star, and that is Thuban.

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