Flying Overhead The Pegasus Constellation

The Pegasus constellation flies low in the northern sky and is visible deep into the southern hemisphere.

The origin of Pegasus is not clear, but does mostly seem to involve Medusa. Perseus slew the Medusa and cut off the head. At that point Pegasus was born by springing forth from Medusa's neck. Some stories have Perseus riding Pegasus during his rescue of Andromeda.

In other versions the blood of Medusa's head dripped into the ocean and mixing with sea foam created Pegasus.

Either way Pegasus earned a place in the sky.

Pegasus is said to be able to create springs with one stamp of his mighty hoof.

One such spring is the Spring of Hippocrene, noted for being the source of inspiration to poets.

The ancient hero Bellerophon tamed Pegasus and rode him during some of his adventures.

Bellerophon with a swelled head tried to fly Pegasus to the top of Mount Olympus and join the Gods.

This action angered Zeus and he sent a gadfly to bite Pegasus. This caused the horse to buck Bellerophon from his back killing him from the fall.

Pegasus flew on to Olympus where he served Zeus.

Pegasus constellation outline
Pegasus constellation

Right Ascension: 22 hours

Declination: 20 degrees

Visible between latitudes +90 and -60 degrees

Best seen in October at 9:00 PM local time

Named Stars: MARKAB (Alpha Pegasi) SCHEAT (Beta Pegasi) ALGENIB (Gamma Pegasi) ENIF (Epsilon Pegasi) Homam (Zeta Pegasi) Matar (Eta Pegasi) Baham (Theta Pegasi) Salm (Tau Pegasi)

Alpha Andromedae was Delta Pegasi. It's one corner of the asterism "the Great Square of Pegasus".

Enif(Epsilon Pegasi) is a double star resolvable in small telescopes. They are a 2.39 magnitude supergiant and a 9 magnitude companion. Enif is the brightest star in the constellation.

Globular cluster M15 is very bright and nice to view in binoculars or small telescopes.

In 150mm(6in) scopes M15 can be resolved into some individual stars.

M15 is located near Enif at the tip of the nose.

There are about 12 galaxies located in the constellation Pegasus. The brightest of these is NGC7331.

The star 51 Pegasi was the first star similar to our sun to have confirmed extra-solar planets.

Pegasus shares borders with:Lacerta   Cygnus   Vulpecula   Delphinus Equuleus   Aquarius   Pisces   Andromeda

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