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Leo lights up the night’s sky

February 22, 2011
By Aileen O’Donoghue, aodonoghue@stlawu.edu

Leo, the king of beasts, the great lion, has risen into our evening skies. As the diagram shows, Leo is one of the few constellations that actually looks like what it is supposed to be. When I point it out to people at star parties (as observing sessions for the public are called), I describe it as looking like the Sphinx and people are instantly able to pick it out. As shown on the diagram, the bright star Regulus (REGG-you-luss) marks the lion's elbow as he rests on his belly facing to the west (our right) with his front paws stretched out to Omicron (OH-mih-chron), his mane curling from Regulus through Algieba (Al-JEE-buh) to Ras Elased Australis (Rhas El-A'-sed Aus-TRAL-iss), his body stretching back to Zosma (ZOHZ-muh) and Chertan (CHUR-tun), and his tail stretched out to Denebola (Den-EBB-oh-luh).

 
 
 

 

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