Q:

What is the symbol for Saturn?

A:

Quick Answer

Although it has no formal name, the symbol for Saturn is meant to represent a scythe or sickle and is similar in appearance to a cursive "h" with a horizontal line across the top. The International Astronomical Union prefers for scientists to use the abbreviation "S" in formal contexts.

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Full Answer

Saturn derives its name from the Roman god of agriculture, who is the likely source of the sickle-shaped symbol. Ancient Greeks typically used planetary symbols in artworks. In recent times, the symbols are more often used in astrology than in formal scientific publications. The sun, moon and minor planets also have representative symbols.

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