Phoenix


Phoenix


English namePhoenix

Major
stars
alpha PhoenicisAnkaamagn. 2,4RA: 00h 26m 17.03sDec: -42 18' 20.9"
beta Phoenicismagn. 3,4RA: 01h 06m 05.05sDec: -46 43' 07.3"
gamma Phoenicismagn. 3,4RA: 01h 28m 21.95sDec: -43 19' 05.2"

DescriptionConstellation of middling dimensions, situated to the west of the southern part of Eridanus.

It doesn't contain particularly remarkable objects, apart zeta Phoenicis, a double star whose principal component is an eclipse binary that varies from the magnitude 3,9 to 4,4 with a period of 40 hours.


Mythology
and history
The constellation was drawn by the Dutch navigators Pieters Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederik de Houtman towards the end of the XVI century. It represents the mythical bird that, after having lived five hundred years feeding on incense and cardamom, builds a nest of cinnamon and incense in which it let itself die: but from its body comes out a small phoenix, which is destined to live as many years (Ovid, Metamorphoses, book XV, vv. 391-407).


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