M45 The Pleiades

Other Messier Objects

The Pleiades are, according to Greek mythology, the seven daughters of Atlas, the titan who holds up the sky, and the Oceanid named Pleione. The sisters are Alcyone, Maia, Electra, Taygeta, Celaeno, Merope and Sterope. The Great Hunter, Orion, fell in love with them and chased them for seven years.

Today there are only six stars in the Pleiades that are easily visible with the naked eye. There are many theories about what happened to the 7th one. Celaeno has often been called the "Lost Pleiad" because she was hit by lightning according to mythology. In reality, the star we call Celaeno is just at the limit of human vision in terms of brightness.

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