Another famous myth related to Pegasus is that of another Greek hero, namely Bellerophon. Bellerophon was sent by King Iobates of Lycia to kill Chimera, a monster that could breathe fire.
The constellation of Pegasus is the seventh largest constellation in the sky. Its name comes from the winged horse Pegasus in Greek mythology and is one of the oldest Greek constellations.
- The constellation of Pegasus was one of the first 48 Greek constellations, first mentioned by the famous astronomer Ptolemy in his 2nd century Almagest.
- Pegasus is now among 88 modern constellations, where it holds the title of the seventh largest constellation in the sky, extending at approximately 1,121 square degrees.
- Pegasus contains only one Messier object, the globular cluster Messier 15, which lies about 33,000 light-years from Earth.
- There is only one meteor shower associated with the constellation of Pegasus, the July Pegasids.
- The brightest star in Pegasus is Enif / Epsilon Pegasi, which has an apparent brightness of 2,399 magnitudes.
- About 12 stars in Pegasus have now been confirmed to have planets.
- There is one famous asterism in Pegasus, the Great Pegasus Square, which is formed by the three brightest stars in the constellation: Markab, Schat, Algenib, and the star Alpheratz, which is the brightest star in the Andromeda constellation.
- Asterism The Great Pegasus Square is used by astronomers as a guide in searching for famous deep sky objects such as the Andromeda Galaxy.
- There are many interesting bright stars in Pegasus, among them the brightest star Enif, the second brightest, Schat, the third brightest, Markab, the fourth brightest Algenib, a red dwarf and a star system of white dwarf stars labeled AG Pegasi, pulsating red giants Phi and Psi Pegasi , the white star Salm, or the first sun-like star discovered to include exoplanet 51 Pegasi.
- There are also many deep sky objects in the Pegasus constellation, such as the spiral galaxy NGC 7331, the Seyfert galaxy NGC 7742, Einstein’s Cross – quasar, and Stephan’s Quintet – galaxy cluster.
The constellation of Pegasus is one of the oldest and largest Greek constellations, first mentioned in Ptolemy’s Almagest, which contains 48 recorded constellations.
The constellation Pegasus was named and associated with the legendary winged horse, also called Pegasus, from Greek mythology. According to legend, the horse had magical powers, its hooves could, for example, dig a spring.
Hippocrene was one such spring, and was so blessed that those who drank from its water could write poetry. Pegasus was born when the legendary Greek hero Perseus chopped off the head of Medusa, fertilized by the god Poseidon.
He was born with Chrysaor of the blood of Medusa. Eventually, Pegasus became the horse of another legendary Greek hero, Bellerophon, who was asked to kill the Chimera and succeeded with the help of Athena and Pegasus.
Despite this success, Bellerophon asked Pegasus to take him to Mount Olympus after his children died. Although Pegasus agreed, he fell back to Earth after Zeus either threw a lightning bolt at him or sent a gadget to force Pegasus to knock down Bellerophon, after which he placed Pegasus in the heavens.
It is a weak meteor shower that peaks around July 9, with a ZHR of just 3 meteors per hour. These meteors are moving fast, however, at around 70 km / 43.4 miles per second.
Pegasus, son of Medusa and Poseidon
The myth said that Pegasus was the son of the mortal Medusa and Poseidon, the god of the sea. Pegasus and his brother Chrysaor were born of the blood of their decapitated mother Medusa, a gorgon deceived and killed by Perseus.
A more detailed version of the myth says that two of them were born when Medusa’s blood was mixed with the sea foam. The myth says that Pegasus was born a winged horse because his father Poseidon was shaped like a horse when he seduced Medusa. When Pegasus was born, a mighty thunderclap with lightning pierced the sky, and thus his connection with the forces of heaven was established.
But the most common version of the Pegasus myth says that the goddess Athena tamed the winged horse and gave it to Perseus, who later had to fly away to help his beloved Andromeda.
Pegasus and the Muses
Back to the aftermath of the birth of Pegasus. Without his parents, he was raised by the Muses on Mount Helikon, where he was taken by the goddess Athena. In all his excitement at being offered to these women, Pegasus was hitting the mountainside with his hooves, his footprints turning the springs into flowing fountains of inspiration.
These springs became sacred to the Muses who loved and respected the “flying horse”. But for one of them – Urania, the Muse of Astronomy and Universal Love, Pegasus was especially important. She saw a heroic future for Pegasus, as well as some possible heavenly honor that awaited him. Urania suffered a lot when Bellerophontes, the mythical hero, took Pegasus.
Hesiod’s story of the “kidnapping” of Pegasus by the Bellerophones confirmed that whenever Pegasus struck his hoof, an immediate fountain of inspiration burst forth. One of these sacred springs was Hippocrene (meaning “horse spring”) on Mount Helicon.
NGC 7318 is a pair of colliding galaxies, NGC 7318a and NGC 7318b, located approximately 300 million light-years away. Their apparent luminosity is magnitude 14.4 and 13.9, respectively.
CLASSICAL LITERATURE QUOTES
THE BIRTH OF PEGASUS