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Deep Sky Objects

The 18th Century French astronomer Charles Messier created a list of "objects to avoid" during his hundreds of hours of comet hunting. These are objects that had a diffuse or elongated appearance, like a comet, when viewed with the naked eye or seen through a telescope.

In general, the Messier objects represent some of the brightest and most interesting objects in the sky; however, many astronomers, including William Herschel, John Herschel, Lewis Swift, and others, swept the sky during the 18th and 19th centuries to look for more deep sky objects. As a result, other catalogs were created, some of which listed hundreds and even thousands of objects. As I continue to image the sky, I will post new images in the categories below.

Messier Objects

New General Catalog