15 Astronomy Names for Horses

Updated on February 20, 2019
Teeuwynn Woodruff profile image

Teeuwynn rode horses for decades, including her beloved Appaloosa, Aspen. She qualified at state and national levels in horse shows.

Horses are magnificent animals. They are so beautiful and graceful, it seems as if they could have galloped out of the stars and into our lives. These wonderful animals who have been a part of human history for so long deserve names that honor their almost otherworldly inner and outer beauty.

The following 15 names all come from astronomical bodies, constellations, and events. When you give your horse or foal a name with meaning, it helps you bond with them. Every time you say their name, you will also know the meaning it holds behind it. So, read through these names and see if any might work for the foal, mare, gelding, or stallion entering your life (or for any horse in your life that needs a new start with a new name).

New foal waiting for an astronomical name.
New foal waiting for an astronomical name.

1. Altair

This star is the brightest one in the Aquila constellation. Altair is a very rapidly rotating star. The name comes from an abbreviation of an Arabic phrase meaning “flying eagle.” Because of the stars association with speed, this name would work wonderfully for any horse that is fast or loves to gallop flat out.

2. Andromeda

One of the 88 modern constellations, Andromeda is a name from Greek mythology. Andromeda was the daughter of Cassiopeia. Andromeda is chained to a rock by the ocean as a sacrifice to Cetus, a sea monster. The Greek hero Perseus saves her.

Andromeda’s brightest star, Alpha Andromedae, is also considered part of the Pegasus constellation. Beta Andromedae, another star in the constellation, is a red giant. Because of these two separate meanings, Andromeda could be a good name for a brave mare who is willing to face danger. It would also be a lovely name for a chestnut mare to reflect the red giant star in the constellation.

3. Aurora

An aurora is the earth’s most spectacular light display. The aurora borealis are the northern lights and only seen in the far North of our planet. The southern lights are seen around the Antarctic regions. The lights dance across the sky in a myriad of colors. Aurora could work for many mares and foals. It might be particularly good for horses with strong markings like appaloosas, pintos, roans, or horses with flashy markings.

4. Barnard

Barnard 33 is also called the Horsehead Nebula. This dark nebula belongs to the constellation Orion. Orion is the constellation of a giant archer that graces the northern skies. The reason this is called the Horsehead Nebula is because of its unique shape and swirling dark gases. These shapes look like a horse’s head when seen from Earth.

Barnard would make a fine name for a colt, stallion, or gelding with a dark coat or one with a mercurial temperament.

A horse that could fit the astronomical name Barnard.
A horse that could fit the astronomical name Barnard.

5. Ceres

This dwarf planet is the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Ceres is covered in rock and ice. Ceres could be a good name for a horse of either gender. It might be particularly good for a grey or white horse or for a large, powerful one due to Ceres size.

6. Corona

The corona is the aura of plasma surrounds stars, including our sun. It’s easiest to see our sun’s corona during the rare solar eclipse. Latin for “crown,” the corona appears like a golden halo when seen. This name might be nice for a palomino, chestnut, or light bay mare.

7. Equinox

Each year we have two equinoxes, the vernal and autumnal equinoxes. These are the times when the Sun’s visible center is exactly above the equator. During the equinoxes, the periods of day and night are roughly equal. Because of the balanced nature of the equinox, this name would be great for a horse with a balanced temperament.

8. Herschel

Herschel is the last name of early German astronomer siblings Caroline and William Herschel. William Herschel constructed a number of new advances in telescopes and other astronomical devices. Caroline Herschel was the first woman to be awarded the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1828. This name is an excellent one for any intelligent or creative horse.

This grey horse has a twinkle in his eye that makes you think he could be a Herschel.
This grey horse has a twinkle in his eye that makes you think he could be a Herschel.

9. Kamaria

This Swahili girl’s name means “of the moon.” This lovely name would be great for any grey, silver, black, or even roan mare or foal.

10. Luna

The godly embodiment of the moon in Roman mythology, Luna is the Sun’s opposite. Luna is a lovely name for any mare who loves to play out in the fields at night or who’s coat shines in the moonlight.

11. Polaris

The North Star or Pole Star, Polaris is the brightest star in Ursa Minor. It is called the lesser bear constellation. Polaris is a yellow super giant. Because Polaris is so far north and stands almost motionless in the sky it is used by sailors for navigation. This name could work for a horse of either gender. It would be wonderful for a horse with a steady personality you can count on or for a palomino, reflecting the star’s status as a yellow super giant.

This palomino would make a lovely Polaris.
This palomino would make a lovely Polaris.

12. Rigel

This blue super giant of a star is the brightest star in the constellation Orion. This young star is still growing and is expected to become a supernova some day in the future. This powerful name would be great for a young horse, a powerful stallion or a gelding, perhaps one with a bright and shiny coat.

13. Sagan

Carl Sagan was a world-renowned cosmologist, astrophysicist, astronomer, and astrobiologist. He did a tremendous amount of work looking into the possibility of extraterrestrial life including sending the first messages into space. This name would be interesting for a horse who is curious about life, especially smart, or always finding a way to get out of his stall, the barn, or other places.

14. Sirius

Sirius is the brightest star in the sky. It’s name comes from the Greek for glowing or scorching. Some people call Sirius the Dog Star. Due to Sirius’ brightness, it would be great for a male horse with a shining coat or one with a shining intellect. The nickname Dog Star could also make this a good name for a horse that goes out with dogs or enjoys dogs at the barn.

15. Stella

Stella is the name of a small impact crater on the surface of the moon. Because it is a fresh crater it has a clear ray system of strong light markings radiating out from the impact area. This name would be great for a mare or female foal with stockings or a blaze or other strong markings like the ray system on the crater. It would also work for a mare with a star on her forward as the name Stella also means star.

Some Inspiration—Foals Playing Together!

© 2018 Teeuwynn Woodruff


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    • Teeuwynn Woodruff profile imageAUTHOR

      Teeuwynn Woodruff 

      6 months ago from Washington State

      I'm so glad the names on this list were helpful to you! Those are great choices.

    • profile image


      6 months ago

      I just figured out today that I am getting two horses tomorrow, and their names are Wade, and Billy Jack, I would like to rename Wade, Sirius, and Billy Jack Ceres, Thank you so much these are soo helpful.

    • renee21 profile image


      7 months ago

      These are some pretty cool names! I'll take this article into consideration when I get a new horse.


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