The Upper Arm
Star Name

The Upper Arm

Part of the Hands of Thuraya celestial complex


Star Names

The Upper Arm (al-‘adud)

The Upper Arm is part of the Henna-Dyed Hand (al-kaf al-khadib) of Thuraya, a brilliant star cluster that was anthropomorphized as a female figure. One of two Hands, the Henna-Dyed Hand is longer than the Amputated Hand (al-kaf al-jadhma’) and features several well-defined elements.

The Upper Arm (al-'adud) as it appears in the west about 45 minutes before sunrise in early November.

The Upper Arm (al-‘adud) as it appears in the west about 45 minutes before sunrise in early November. Sky simulations made with Stellarium.


An elongated group of stars located between the Elbow and Thuraya.

Modern Identification

δ PER, blue-white star, magnitude 3.01
ν PER, yellow star, magnitude 3.77
ε PER, blue-white star, magnitude 2.89


The stars of the Upper Arm set together about the time that the Brand (al-haq’a) sets, but they rise separately over the course of 2 weeks. Ibn Qutayba (d. 879 CE) reported that the Brand was said to set on the morning of December 9. On account of the precession of the equinoxes, today we can expect to observe the Upper Arm setting in early January and rising throughout the month of May, as seen from the latitude of Tucson. (See How to Observe on the About page for more on this topic.)

Rain Stars

The Upper Arm does not figure among the rain stars.

Lunar Stations

The Upper Arm is not one of the lunar stations.

 Related Stars and Celestial Complexes

The Upper Arm is part of the Hands of Thuraya (aydi ath-thuraya, أيدي الثريا) folkloric celestial complex. The Upper Arm connects the Henna-Dyed Hand (al-kaf al-khadib, الكف الخضيب) to Thuraya itself (ath-thuraya, الثريا).

 Related Blog Posts

Thuraya, the Abundant Darling of the Heavens