Facts about Virgo

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1.Virgo is also called The Maiden
Virgo constellation is also called the Maiden because it is the only female constellation in the zodiac. Virgo is a representation each powerful and famous female in mythology such as Artemis, Athena, Demeter and Persephone. She is often seen carrying a staff and a grain of wheat.

 2.Location of Virgo in the Sky
Virgo constellation is found on the southern sky. The name Virgo is derived from Latin language and implies virgin. Virgo constellation is one of the 12 zodiac constellations that was initially catalogued in the second century by Ptolemy, an astronomer of Greek descent.

 3.The Second Largest Constellation
Virgo is the second largest star constellation and occupies 1294 square degrees. Only the Hydra constellation is larger than Virgo.  Virgo constellation also features one of the 2 points where the ecliptic intersects with the celestial equator. It also hosts the autumn equinox point that is found close to the Beta Virgins star. Virgo can be seen between the months of April and July.

 4.Major Deep Sky Objects
Some of the most pronounced deep sky objects within the Virgo constellation are the bright galaxies that include Messier 49, 58, 60 and 87, the Eyes Galaxies, Sombrero Galaxy, the Quasar 3C 273 and the Siamese Twins. However, Virgo constellation contains more than 3000 galaxies. Most of these galaxies are located on Virgo’s left arm and can be seen using a telescope.

 5.Virgo Neighbors
Virgo constellation has several neighboring constellations that include Coma, Bootes, Berenices, Crater, Leo, Hydra, Corvus, Serpens Caput and Libra. It is in the Zodiac constellation family along with Taurus, Aries, Cancer, Libra, Leo, Aquarius, Pisces, Capricornus, Sagittarius, Scorpius, and Gemini. Virgo is the constellation with most stars that have known planets, 20. It is associated with 2 meteor showers, the Mu Virginids and the Virginids.

 6.Virgo Mythology
Virgo constellation is associated with the goddess of justice in Greek, Dike. Dike was daughter to Greek Titaness Themis and Zeus. Virgo is often presented with wings similar to those of angels and an ear of wheat on her left hand that is marked by Spica, a bright star. She lies next to Libra, which symbolizes scales of justice. Dike was often called Astraeia, the daughter of Astraeus, who was considered father of stars as well as Eos, the goddess of dawn.

 7.Virgo’s Brightest Star
Spica is the brightest star in the Virgo constellation and is also the 15th brightest star that dawns the sky at night. It is also the star that represents the wheat gain that is seen in the constellation. Spica derives its name for the Latin language which and means “ear of wheat”. Within the Virgo constellation, Spica appears as the big, white sphere on the lower left section. Initially, Spica does not have a person’s appearance until one discovers that she is lying down with her head facing east.

 8.The Beta Virgins
This star is located 35.65 light years from the Sun and it belongs to spectral class F9 V. It is the 5th brightest star in the Virgo constellation. Its conventional name, Zavijava means corner of a barking dog and is derived from Arabic language.

 9.Virgo’s High Velocity Star
The Delta Virginis, a huge red star is found in the Virgo constellation. It belongs to the M3 III spectral class and is about 198 light years from the sun. It can be seen with naked eyes and has a 3.4 magnitude. Its mass is 1.4 times that of solar and its radius is 48 times more than the Sun’s radius. This star is also 468 more luminous than the sun and is a high velocity star that moves at faster than its neighboring stars.

 10.Virgo’s 3rd Brightest Star
The third brightest star in Virgo constellation is the Epsilon Virginis. This giant star is 109.6 light years away from the Sun and belongs to the G8 III spectral class. It is estimated to be 77 times luminous than the Sun.

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