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The following sentence is taken from "Appointment With Love" by Sulamith Ish-kishor. It's a reference to New York's Grand Central Station. I'm wondering why the roof is described as "starred." What does it mean?

Under the immense, starred roof, people were walking fast, like threads of color being woven into a gray web.

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“Starred roof” is a literal description of the ceiling of the Main Concourse of New York's Grand Central Terminal, which is decorated with a mural of constellations, originally painted in 1913 by James Monroe Hewlett and Charles Basing, and restored in 1945 and again in 1996 due to damage from water and smoke. Wikipedia says:

The depicted constellations include those of the winter zodiac viewable from October to March, from Aquarius to Cancer. Also depicted are Pegasus, Triangulum Majus and Minus, Aries, Musca Borealis, and Orion, as well as two broad gold bands spanning the ceiling, representing the ecliptic and the equator.

The ceiling looked like this in 2008:

Description follows.
Photo by Arnoldius, licensed under CC-BY-SA 3.0

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  • Speaking of a ceiling of a grand railroad station, I remember seeing an old movie on television where character in the attic above fell through the ceiling of the concourse of grand railroad station. But I haven't been able to identify tha tmovie. Commented Jan 18, 2023 at 13:35
  • @magolding This should be a new question, but maybe 'Hugo' is the answer? Commented Jan 18, 2023 at 15:07

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