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Johan Doppelmayr's celestial chart of Pavo, c. 1742
Johan Doppelmayr's celestial chart of Pavo, c. 1742

Pavo is a constellation in the southern sky with the Latin name for peacock. It is one of twelve constellations conceived by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman. First appearing on a 35 cm (14 in) diameter celestial globe published in 1598 in Amsterdam by Plancius and Jodocus Hondius, it was depicted in Johann Bayer's star atlas Uranometria of 1603. The constellation's brightest member, Alpha Pavonis, is also known as Peacock and appears as a 1.91-magnitude blue-white star, but is actually a spectroscopic binary. Delta Pavonis is a Sun-like star some 19.9 light years distant. Six of the star systems in Pavo have been found to host planets, including HD 181433 with a super-earth, and HD 172555 with evidence of a major interplanetary collision in the past few thousand years. The constellation contains NGC 6752, the third-brightest globular cluster in the sky, and the spiral galaxy NGC 6744, which closely resembles our Milky Way but is twice as large. (Full article...)

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SMS Gazelle

SMS Gazelle was the lead ship of the ten-vessel Gazelle class, built by the Imperial German Navy. Armed with a main battery of ten 10.5 cm (4.1 in) guns and two 45 cm (18 in) torpedo tubes, Gazelle was capable of a top speed of 19.5 knots (36.1 km/h; 22.4 mph). She was commissioned into the High Seas Fleet in 1901 and participated in the Venezuela Crisis. She served with the fleet until 1914, when she was employed as a coastal defense ship after the outbreak of World War I. After hitting a mine, she was reduced to a mine storage hulk. In 1920, she was stricken from the naval register and sold for scrap.

Lithograph: Hugo Graf; restoration: Adam Cuerden

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