Definitions

Corona Borealis

Corona Borealis

[kuh-roh-nuh bawr-ee-al-is, -ey-lis, -bohr-]
Corona Borealis [Lat.,=the northern crown], northern constellation lying between Hercules and Boötes. Its name derives from the crown Bacchus gave Ariadne when she was deserted by Theseus. The constellation is a small arc of bright stars, of which the brightest is Alphecca (Alpha Coronae Borealis). Corona Borealis reaches its highest point in the evening sky in early July.
Corona Borealis is a small northern constellation whose main stars form a semicircular arc. It is one of the 88 modern constellations, and was also one of the 48 constellations listed by Ptolemy, who referred to the constellation as Corona. The Borealis (northern) was added later on, to contrast with Corona Australis, the southern crown.

Notable features

It has no first magnitude stars. Its brightest star, α CrB (Alphecca, also known as Gemma) is of magnitude 2.2 (slightly variable) and is considered a member of the diffuse Ursa Major Moving Group. The constellation contains several interesting variable stars: two of the best known are R Coronae Borealis and T Coronae Borealis.

Notable deep sky objects

Corona Borealis contains no bright deep sky objects. Abell 2065 is a highly concentrated galaxy cluster containing over 400 members, the brightest of which are of 16th magnitude.

Named Stars

Bayer Name Origin Meaning
α

Alphecca

Arabic

"The broken" ring of stars
β

Nusakan

Arabic

The two series
T

Blaze Star

English

The star that blazes now and then

Mythology

Corona Borealis was sometimes considered to represent a crown that was given by Dionysus to Ariadne, the daughter of Minos of Crete. At other points it was considered to belong, in a sense, to Boötes, the herdsman, or the keeper of the bears. The Cheyenne tribe called it "Camp Circle" as they arranged their camps in a semicircle. In Welsh mythology, the Northern Crown was called Caer Arianrhod, ‘the Castle of the Silver Circle,’ and was the heavenly abode of the Lady Arianrhod (Squire, 2000:154-155).

See also

References

  • Ian Ridpath and Wil Tirion (2007). Stars and Planets Guide, Collins, London. ISBN 978-0007251209. Princeton University Press, Princeton. ISBN 978-0691135564.
  • Squire, C. (2000). The mythology of the British Islands: an introduction to Celtic myth, legend, poetry and romance. London & Ware: UCL & Wordsworth Editions Ltd.

External links

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