Cancer Minor (constellation)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Four 5th magnitude stars in Gemini represent the constellation.

Cancer Minor (Latin for "lesser crab") was a constellation composed from a few stars in Gemini adjacent to Cancer. The constellation was introduced in 1612 (or 1613) by Petrus Plancius.[1]

The 5th-magnitude stars constituting Cancer Minor were HIP 36616, and 68, 74, 81 and 85 Geminorum, forming a faint natural arrow-shaped asterism.

Detail from Atlas Coelestis, 1681 (Map shown in mirror image, from outside celestial sphere)

It is only found on a few 17th-century Dutch celestial globes and in the atlas of Andreas Cellarius. It was no longer used after the 18th century.