Northern Coalsack


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North′ern Coal′sack


n.
a dark nebula in the Northern Cross.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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How often have we read that the complex of Milky Way dust clouds composing the Great Rift broadens into the Northern Coalsack, then ends at Deneb?
Appropriately, the true Coalsack is adjacent to the Southern Cross, and the Northern Coalsack lies next to the Northern Cross, which is formed from the Swan's five brightest stars.
At the bulbous northern end of the Great Rift, between Alpha and Gamma Cygni, is the Northern Coalsack. Since it adjoins the Northern Cross asterism, the derivation of the name is obvious; the original Coalsack is near the Southern Cross (and is invisible at midnorthern latitudes).

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