Sung dynasty chronicles of the appearance of the Crab Nebula Supernova of 1054 AD.


From the Sung-shih [Annals, of the Sung Dynasty] (Astronomical Treatise, chapter 56).

 "On the 1st year of the Chi-ho reign period, 5th month, chi-chou (day) [July 4, 1054], a guest star appeared approximately several inches to the south-east of Tian-kuan [Aldebaran]. After a year and more it gradually vanished."

 From the Sung-shih (Chapter 9).

 "On the first year of the Chia-wu reign period, 3rd month, xin-wei (day). The Director of the Astronomical Bureau reported that since the 5th month of the 1st year of the Chih-ho reign period, a guest star had appeared in the morning at the east, guarding Tian-kuan, and now [two years after its first appearance] it has vanished".

 From the Sung-hui-yao [Essentials of the Sung dynasty history] (Chapter 52)

 "On the 1st year of the Chih-ho reign period, 7th month, 22nd day [August 27, 1054] ... Yang Wei-te said 'I humbly observe that a guest star has appeared. Above the star in question there is a faint glow, yellow in colour. If one carefully examines the prognostications concerning the emperor, the interpretation is as follows: The fact that the guest star does not trespass against Pi and its brightness is full means that there is a person of great worth. I beg that this be handed over to the Bureau of Historiography'. All the Officials presented there congratulations and the Emperor ordered that it be sent to the Bureau of Historiography.

During the 3rd month of the 1st year of the Chia-yu reign period the Director of the Astronomical Bureau said, 'The guest star has vanished, which is an omen of the departure of the guest'. Earlier, during the 5th month in the 1st year of the Chih-ho reign period, the guest star appeared in the morning in the east guarding Tian-kuan. It was visible in the daytime, like Venus. It had pointed rays in the four directions and its colour was reddish-white. Altogether it was visible in daytime for 23 days."

Other accounts of the same event appear in the annals of the Liao Dynasty (a nomadic tribe of north China), and in Japanese chronicles.