Messier Objects

M73: Open Star Cluster (Aquarius) RA: 20h 58.9m / DEC: -12° 38'.1
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder

M73 is one of the controversial Messier objects. Located 1.3 degrees east of M72, this object is a cluster of four stars. That's it. Some have suggested this object was mistaken by Messier for a larger cluster. However, the Frenchman's notes include the following descriptive comments, "A cluster of three or four stars." Succinct. To the point. Accurate.

M72 M74


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Revised: February 14, 2002 [WDF]