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Gemini

[ jem-uh-nahy, -nee ]
/ ˈdʒɛm əˌnaɪ, -ni /
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plural noun, genitive Gem·i·no·rum [jem-uh-nawr-uhm, -nohr-] /ˌdʒɛm əˈnɔr əm, -ˈnoʊr-/ for 1.

Astronomy. the Twins, a zodiacal constellation between Taurus and Cancer containing the bright stars Castor and Pollux.
Astrology.
  1. the third sign of the zodiac: the mutable air sign.
  2. a person born under this sign, usually between May 21st and June 20th.
a two-person U.S. spacecraft designed for orbital rendezvous and docking: used in 1965–66 in various experiments preparatory to a landing on the moon.

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Origin of Gemini

1350–1400; Middle English <Latin geminī, plural of geminus
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

VOCAB BUILDER

What does Gemini mean?

Gemini is the name of a constellation that is interpreted as representing a pair of twins. It is sometimes referred to as the Twins.

A constellation is a group of stars that appear near each other in the sky—especially a group that has been given a name. Gemini is considered one of the 12 zodiacal constellations—constellations that appear within a particular portion of the sky called the zodiac.

In astronomy, the zodiac is the band of sky along which the paths of the sun, the moon, and the planets appear to move.

Despite its basis in astronomy, the word zodiac is mainly associated with and most often used in the context of astrology, the nonscientific practice in which the positions of heavenly bodies at certain times are thought to influence or be correlated with human behavior and events. In astrology, zodiac refers to a diagram (often a circular one) representing the zodiac belt and showing the symbols associated with each of the 12 constellations or sections, which are called the signs of the zodiac. Gemini is one of these signs. It is situated between Taurus and Cancer and is considered the third sign of the zodiac.

The other signs of the zodiac are Aries, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, and Pisces.

The position of the sun in a particular portion of the zodiac at the moment of a person’s birth is thought to correlate with their personality. This is what people are referring to when they talk about their zodiac sign (or star sign or often just sign). People whose sign is Gemini are those born between May 21 and June 20.

The word Gemini can be used as a noun to refer to someone who is born during this time, as in I was born in late May, so I’m a Gemini. The word Geminian can be used to mean the same thing. It can also be used as an adjective form of Gemini.

The constellation is linked to the classical myth of the twins Castor and Pollux. The two brightest stars in Gemini are named after them.

Gemini is also the name of a 1960s NASA program that involved multiple launches of a two-person spacecraft in preparation for the Apollo moon landings.

Example: Even though I’m a Gemini, I don’t fit into the charismatic Gemini stereotype.

Where does Gemini come from?

The first records of the word Gemini in English come from the 1300s. It comes from the Latin geminī, plural of geminus, meaning “twin.”

In astrology, the different signs of the zodiac are thought to be associated with certain personality traits. People whose sign is Gemini are said to be charismatic and resourceful and to sometimes have a dual nature (in parallel with the twin stars of the constellation). Gemini and the other signs of the zodiac are often used in the context of a person’s horoscope. The word horoscope can refer to a diagram of the heavens that maps the relative position of planets and the signs of the zodiac. It can also refer to a prediction based (or said to be based) on a person’s sign and the location of other celestial bodies at the time they were born.

 

Get more insight into what really defines a Gemini by visiting our article on the many traits of Gemini.

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How is Gemini used in real life?

The word Gemini is used to refer to the constellation or the sign of the zodiac named after the constellation. In the context of astrology, people associate a number of different traits with the sign Gemini.

Try using Gemini!

True or False?

People with the sign Gemini are those born between May 21 and June 20.

How to use Gemini in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for Gemini

Gemini
/ (ˈdʒɛmɪˌnaɪ, -ˌniː) /

noun Latin genitive Geminorum (ˌdʒɛmɪˈnɔːrəm)

astronomy a zodiacal constellation in the N hemisphere lying between Taurus and Cancer on the ecliptic and containing the stars Castor and Pollux
classical myth another name for Castor and Pollux
astronautics any of a series of manned US spacecraft launched between the Mercury and Apollo projects to improve orbital rendezvous and docking techniques
astrology
  1. Also called: the Twins the third sign of the zodiac, symbol ♊, having a mutable air classification and ruled by the planet Mercury. The sun is in this sign between about May 21 and June 20
  2. a person born when the sun is in this sign

adjective

astrology born under or characteristic of Gemini
Also (for senses 4b, 5): Geminian (ˌdʒɛmɪˈnaɪən)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for Gemini

Gemini
[ jĕmə-nī′ ]

A constellation in the Northern Hemisphere near Cancer and Auriga. Gemini (the Twins) contains the bright stars Pollux and Castor and is the third sign of the zodiac.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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