Tsia

1989 EK. Discovered 1989 Mar. 5 by E. F. Helin at Palomar.

Named in honor of the ancient sun symbol used by Indians of the Zia Pueblo in central New Mexico (one of the Seven Golden Cities of Cibola sought by Coronado). Although the symbol's name is normally written "Zia", "Tsia" is the spelling in Keresan, the native language of the Zia Pueblo Indians. The symbol now adorns the New Mexico state flag and is often taken as an emblem of the state. It represents first and foremost the sun, the giver of life. From this symbolic sun there radiate four rays consisting of four tongues each; these represent the four cardinal directions (north, south, east and west), the four seasons (spring, summer, fall and winter) and the four stages of life (childhood, youth, adulthood and old age). Also, as ascribed in the official salute to the New Mexico state flag, the Zia is the "symbol of perfect friendship among united cultures". (M 16443)

Name proposed by the discoverer, following a suggestion of Louie V. Burke as part of a project during an undergraduate astronomy class at New Mexico State University. Citation prepared by Alan Hale, instructor of the class.

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