Tim Boucher

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Asterism (Astronomy)

In observational astronomy, an asterism is a popularly-known pattern or group of stars that can be seen in the night sky. This colloquial definition[a] makes it appear quite similar to a constellation,[1] but they differ mostly in that a constellation is an officially recognized area of the sky, while an asterism is a visually obvious collection of stars and the lines used to mentally connect them; as such, asterisms do not have officially determined boundaries and are therefore a more general concept which may refer to any identified pattern of stars. This distinction between terms remains somewhat inconsistent, varying among published sources. An asterism may be understood as an informal group of stars within the area of an official or defunct former constellation.[2] Some include stars from more than one constellation.

Source: Asterism (astronomy) – Wikipedia

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