Nebulous | Definition of nebulous by Merriam-Webster
adjective neb·u·lous ˈne-byə-ləs
not clear : difficult to see, understand, describe, etc.
Ophiuchus – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Visible at latitudes between +80° and −80°.
Best visible at 21:00 (9 p.m.) during the month ofJuly.
Ophiuchus /ɒfiˈjuːkəs/ is a large constellation located around the celestial equator. Its name is from the GreekὈφιοῦχος “serpent-bearer”, and it is commonly represented as a man grasping the snake that is represented by the constellation Serpens. Ophiuchus was one of the 48 constellations listed by the 2nd-century astronomer Ptolemy, and it remains one of the 88 modern constellations. It was formerly referred to as Serpentarius /sɜrpənˈtɛəriəs/ andAnguitenens.
To the ancient Greeks, the constellation represented the god Apollo struggling with a huge snake that guarded the Oracle of Delphi. Later myths identified Ophiuchus with Laocoön, the Trojan priest of Poseidon, who warned his fellow Trojans about the Trojan Horse and was later slain by a pair of sea serpents sent by the gods to punish him.
According to Roman era mythography, the figure represents the healer Asclepius, who learned the secrets of keeping death at bay after observing one serpent bringing another healing herbs. To prevent the entire human race from becoming immortal under Asclepius’ care, Jupiter killed him with a bolt of lightning, but later placed his image in the heavens to honor his good works.
In medieval Islamic astronomy (Azophi’s Uranometry, 10th century), the constellation was known as Al-Ḥawwaʾ “the snake-charmer”.
Aratus describes Ophiuchus as trampling on Scorpio with his feet. This is depicted in Renaissance to Early Modern star charts, beginning with Albrecht Dürer in 1515; in some depictions (such as that of Johannes Kepler, 1604), Scorpio also seems to threaten to sting Serpentarius in the foot. This is consistent with Azophi, who already included ψ Oph and ω Oph as the snake-charmer’s “left foot”, and θ Oph and ο Oph as his “right foot”, making Ophiuchus a zodiacal constellation at least as regards his feet. This arrangement has been taken as symbolic in later literature, and placed in relation to the words spoken by God to the serpent in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:15).
Hubble’s new view of the Butterfly Nebula | Astronomy Now
Known variously as the Butterfly Nebula, Minkowski’s Butterfly, the Twin Jet Nebula, or PN M2-9, this is a striking example of a bipolar planetary nebula. It lies 2,100 light-years away in the constellation Ophiuchus. Bipolar planetary nebulae are formed when the central object is not a single star, but a binary system. Studies have shown that the nebula’s size increases with time, and measurements of this rate of increase suggest that the stellar outburst that formed the lobes occurred just 1200 years ago. Image credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA Acknowledgement: Judy Schmidt.
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