Leo Minor: Wikis


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Leo Minor
Leo Minor
List of stars in Leo Minor
Abbreviation LMi
Genitive Leonis Minoris
Pronunciation /ˌliːoʊ ˈmaɪnər/, genitive /liːˈoʊnɨs mɨˈnɒrɨs/
Symbolism the Small Lion
Right ascension 10 h
Declination +35°
Family Ursa Major
Quadrant NQ2
Area 232 sq. deg. (64th)
Main stars 2
Stars with
known planets
Stars brighter than 3m 0
Stars within 10 pc (32.6 ly) 0
Brightest star 46 LMi (Praecipua) (3.83m)
Nearest star 11 LMi
(36.46 ly, 11.18 pc)
Messier objects 0
Meteor showers Leo Minorids
Ursa Major
Cancer (corner)
Visible at latitudes between +90° and −45°.
Best visible at 21:00 (9 p.m.) during the month of April.

Leo Minor is a small and faint constellation. Its name means "the smaller lion", in contrast to Leo, the larger lion. Its brightest stars form a rough triangle, and it lies between the larger and more recognizable Ursa Major and Leo. Leo Minor was not regarded as a separate constellation by the ancients; it was created by Johannes Hevelius in 1687.


Notable features

Leo Minor above the head of Leo, as depicted in Urania's Mirror, a set of constellation cards published in London c.1825.

Leo Minor contains little to see with small telescopes.



There is only one star brighter than fourth magnitude.

  • 46 LMi (Praecipua): an almost (but not quite) giant star of spectral class K0 which lies at a distance of approximately 98 light years and sports an apparent brightness of 3.83. Praecipua does not have a Bayer designation, making Leo Minor the only constellation whose brightest star does not have one.
  • β LMi: strangely enough this giant star of spectral class G8 is the only star with a Bayer designation, and with its apparent magnitude of 4.21 it is not even the brightest star of Leo Minor.
  • R LMi: this cool long-period variable star (a Mira variable) varies between magnitudes 6.3 and 13.2 during a period of 372.19 days.
  • 20 LMi: this binary star system is only 14.9 parsecs away from the Sun.

Deep sky objects

The brightest deep sky object in Leo Minor is NGC 3003, a galaxy with an apparent brightness of 11.7m and an angular size of 5.9 arcminutes. It is seen almost edge-on.

The mysterious deep sky object known as Hanny's Voorwerp was discovered here in 2007 by Dutch school teacher Hanny van Arkel while participating as a volunteer in the Galaxy Zoo project.

See also


  • Ian Ridpath and Wil Tirion (2007). Stars and Planets Guide, Collins, London. ISBN 978-0007251209. Princeton University Press, Princeton. ISBN 978-0691135564.

External links

Coordinates: Sky map 10h 00m 00s, +35° 00′ 00″


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Wikipedia has an article on:





Named by the astronomer Johannes Hevelius in 1687. From Latin leō, a "lion" + minor, "lesser"

Proper noun

Leo Minor


Leo Minor

  1. (astronomy) A spring constellation of the northern sky, said to resemble a small lion. It lies north of the constellation Leo and south of Ursa Major.

Derived terms


See also


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