The Constellation Gemini

by Dominic Ford
Gemini Gemini
The constellation Gemini. Roll mouse over to see labels.
Source: Stellarium.

Gemini is a northern constellation, dominated by its two brightest stars, Castor and Pollux. It is visible throughout the northern winter months, culminating at midnight around New Year.

Both the galactic plane and the line of the ecliptic pass through this area of the sky: the Sun crosses the border from Taurus shortly after the June solstice, and remains in Gemini until late July.

Gemini is home to a number of open clusters, the brightest of which is M35.

The name ‘Gemini’ is Latin for twins, and refers to Castor and Pollux in classical mythology. Their mother was Leda, but they had different fathers. Castor was the son of Tyndareus, king of Sparta, while Pollux was the son of Zeus.

According to legend, Castor was killed in a family feud with his cousins, while Pollux was an immortal demigod. After his brother's death, Zeus offered Pollux the choice of sharing his immortality with his brother, and the two were forever cast into the sky.

Date First Appeared
Ancient
Sky Area
1.2% of the sky
513.8 square degrees
Messier Objects
Gemini contains the following Messier object: M35.
Caldwell Objects
Gemini contains the following Caldwell object: C39.
Neighbors
The following constellations neighbor Gemini: Auriga, Cancer, Canis Minor, Lynx, Monoceros, Orion, Taurus.
Please wait
Loading 0/4
Click and drag to rotate
Mouse wheel to zoom in/out
Touch with mouse to dismiss

Brightest Objects in Gemini

Stars Open Clusters Globular Clusters Galaxies
Stars Open Clusters Globular Clusters Galaxies
Pollux (mag 1.2) IC 2215 (mag 0.0) NGC 2333 (mag 0.0)
Castor (mag 1.6) IC 2156 (mag 0.0) NGC 2375 (mag 0.0)
Alhena (mag 1.9) Messier 35 (mag 5.1) NGC 2405 (mag 0.0)
α-Gem (mag 2.9) NGC 2129 (mag 6.7) NGC 2450 (mag 0.0)
μ-Gem (mag 2.9) NGC 2395 (mag 8.0) NGC 2498 (mag 0.0)
Mebsuta (mag 3.0) NGC 2420 (mag 8.3) IC 484 (mag 0.0)
Propus (mag 3.3) IC 2157 (mag 8.4) IC 2191 (mag 0.0)
ξ-Gem (mag 3.3) NGC 2331 (mag 8.5) IC 2205 (mag 0.0)
Wasat (mag 3.5) NGC 2158 (mag 8.6) NGC 2288 (mag 0.0)
λ-Gem (mag 3.6) NGC 2266 (mag 9.5) NGC 2385 (mag 0.0)
κ-Gem (mag 3.6) NGC 2355 (mag 9.7) NGC 2481 (mag 0.0)
θ-Gem (mag 3.6) NGC 2304 (mag 10.0) IC 477 (mag 0.0)
ι-Gem (mag 3.8) IC 2176 (mag 0.0)
Mekbuda (mag 4.0) IC 2197 (mag 0.0)
υ-Gem (mag 4.1) IC 2212 (mag 0.0)
ν-Gem (mag 4.1) NGC 2291 (mag 0.0)
ρ-Gem (mag 4.2) NGC 2370 (mag 0.0)
1-Gem (mag 4.2) NGC 2393 (mag 0.0)
σ-Gem (mag 4.3) NGC 2435 (mag 0.0)
τ-Gem (mag 4.4) NGC 2490 (mag 0.0)
30-Gem (mag 4.5) IC 481 (mag 0.0)
e-Gem (mag 4.7) IC 2181 (mag 0.0)
g-Gem (mag 4.9) IC 2203 (mag 0.0)
O-Gem (mag 4.9) NGC 2274 (mag 0.0)
χ-Gem (mag 4.9) NGC 2376 (mag 0.0)

Ashburn

Latitude:
Longitude:
Timezone:

39.04°N
77.49°W
EDT

Color scheme