| CEPHEUS Chart | Midnight Culmination | Skylore | Description | Special Stars |
| Nebulae | Discussed in these Shows |

Constellation Data

  • Name: CEPHEUS
  • Translation: Ethiopian King
  • Abbreviation: Cep
  • Genitive: Cephei
  • Size: 27
  • Regions: Circumpolar
  • RA: 2 hours
  • Decl: +70 degrees
  • Season: Anytime
  • Midnight Culmination: September 29
  • Pages where CEPHEUS is discussed in Chet Raymo's 365 Starry Nights: 153-157,184

What is the Genitive form?
What is Right Ascension (RA)?
Is this constellation ever visible from my latitude? What is Declination?

Where should I look for a constellation on a date before or after its midnight culmination? What is Midnight Culmination?


See Andromeda and Cassiopeia.


Another circumpolar constellation is the Ethiopian king, Cepheus (SEE-fee-us). He sits atop the Milky Way on a throne near his queen Cassiopeia. The legs and seat of his throne make a rough square. On the Ursa Major side of Cassiopeia, looks like a house (or throne) sitting on the Milky Way. Look for mu-Cephei, the "garnet star," with a deep reddish tint. The back of the seat comes to a point at the top above his head.

[star chart]

Star chart created with Voyager II Software for Macintosh, published by Carina Software. This is just a taste of what Voyager can do! For info on Voyager II software, call Carina Software at (510) 355-1266, write them at 12919 Alcosta Blvd Suite #7, San Ramon, CA 94583, or visit Carina Software's home page and check out Voyager II for yourself.

Special Stars

D-Cephei, pulsating giant star.

The Garnet Star is one of the reddest stars known. A huge red giant, much like Betelguese in Orion, its size is uncertain, but if its center were where our sun is, we would be inside it.

The brightest star in Cepheus is Alderamin. In 5000 years it will become the pole star, as it was in 18,000 B.C. (see discussion of precession under Lyra).

Table of 25 Brightest Stars.
What is apparent stellar magnitude?


There is a star moving extremely rapidly, leaving a wake behind in the shape of a guitar known as the Guitar Nebula.

What are Nebulae?
Table of Messier Objects.
What is apparent Magnitude?

Discussed in these Shows

[Small Logo] ©1997 Welcome to the Basic Celestial Phenomena web site. To provide explanations of basic observational astronomy to students, teachers, families, and visitors to planetariums these pages have been written by an ex-OBU Planetarium Director, Kerry Magruder; the OBU Natural Sciences Coordinator, Mike Keas; and some of the students who work in the OBU planetarium.

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