The question whether the Gegenschein can be accounted for by the reflection of light from the same matter as the zodiacal band is still unsettled.
The zodiacal Virgo is held to represent the Assyrian Venus, Ishtar, the ruling divinity of the sixth month, and Sagittarius the archer-god Nergal, to whom the ninth month was dedicated.
The earlier Greek writers - Eudoxus, Eratosthenes, Hipparchus - knew of only eleven zodiacal symbols, but made one do double duty, extending the Scorpion across the seventh and eighth divisions.
3 No representation of the seventh sign has yet been discovered on any Euphratean monument; but it is noticeable that the eighth is frequently doubled,4 and it is difficult to avoid seeing in the pair of zodiacal scorpions carved on Assyrian cylinders the prototype of the Greek scorpion and claws.
The struggle of rival systems of nomenclature, from which our zodiacal series resulted, is plainly visible in their alternations; and the claims of the competing signs were long sought to be conciliated by representing the Balance as held between the claws of the €corpion.