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Canis Major constellation in the hemisphere near Orion, in which the ancients recognized the dog that Orion was carrying hunting.
The main star is Sirius, the brightest star of all heaven.
Canis Major is one of the 48 constellations listed by Ptolemy and is also one of the 88 modern constellations.
Canis Major contains two record-breaking star Sirius is the brightest in the night sky, forming the southern vertex of the Winter Triangle; VY Canis Majoris is instead the largest star known so far, although not visible to the naked eye. Canis Major is visible in the evening sky in the months between December and April, coinciding the winter period in the northern hemisphere and spring; although not a very large constellation, its detection in heaven is quite simple, thanks to the presence of the bright star Sirius, which is the dog’s nose. To locate Sirius, where its high brightness is not enough, you can take advantage of a well-known asterism and instantly recognizable: the Orion Belt. Extending towards the south-east the ideal line connecting the three stars of the belt meets Sirius; the star is also recognizable because it is the southern summit of another large asterism known in the northern hemisphere with the name of Winter Triangle, consisting, in addition to Sirius, the brightest star Procyon and Betelgeuse, the red α Orionis. The rest of the constellation extends south of Sirius, following the parallel line of the Milky Way Southern, up to over 30 ° south declinations. The southern part of the constellation contains very rich star fields, visible in part to the naked eye. Its visibility is certainly facilitated by the regions of the Southern Hemisphere, but its relative proximity to the celestial equator causes this constellation is easily observable well also from the boreal regions, with the exception of the areas close to and north of the Circle Arctic; in particular the star Sirius, lying in the northern part of the Constellation, is well observed also well beyond the Arctic Circle.
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