Noctua (constellation)

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For the genus of moths with the same name, see Noctua (moth). For the computer accessories company, see Noctua (company).
Card 32 of Urania's Mirror depicts Noctua the owl, perched on the tail of Hydra, the serpent.

Noctua was a constellation located near the tail of Hydra in the Southern celestial hemisphere, but is no longer recognized.[1] It was introduced by Alexander Jamieson in his 1822 work, A Celestial Atlas. and appeared in a derived collection of illustrated cards, Urania's Mirror.[2] Now designated Asterism a, the owl was composed of the stars 4 Libra and 54–57 Hydra which range from 4th to 6th magnitude.[3]

The French astronomer, Pierre Charles Le Monnier, had introduced a bird on the water serpent's tail as the constellation Solitaire, named for the extinct flightless bird, the Rodrigues solitaire, but the image was that of a rock thrush which had been classified in the genus Turdus, giving rise to the constellation name Turdus Solitarius, the solitary thrush. It has also been depicted it as a mockingbird.[4] The boundaries of the constellation were defined as as longitude 0° to 26°30' and from the ecliptic to 15° S.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bakich, Michael E. (22 June 1995). The Cambridge Guide to the Constellations. Cambridge University Press. pp. 45–47. ISBN 978-0-521-44921-2. 
  2. ^ Kanas, Nick (5 June 2012). Star Maps: History, Artistry, and Cartography. Springer Science & Business Media. pp. 185–6. ISBN 978-1-4614-0917-5. 
  3. ^ O'Meara, Steve (14 June 2007). Herschel 400 Observing Guide. Cambridge University Press. p. 192. ISBN 978-0-521-85893-9. 
  4. ^ Ian Ridpath (1988). Star Tales. James Clarke & Co. p. 151. ISBN 978-0-7188-2695-6. 

External links[edit]