The Polish astronomer Johannes Hevelius, who invented this faint constellation in the 17th century, named it the Lynxbecause, he said, only the lynx-eyed would be able to spot it. It lies in the northern sky between Ursa Major and Auriga, and is surprisingly large - greater in area than Gemini, for example. Except in good dark-sky conditions, naked eye observers will see little more than its brightest star, Alpha Lyncis, magnitude 3.1. There are, however, numerous double stars to attract telescope users.
Depiction: The Lynx
Highest in the Sky: January to March
Size Ranking: 28th
Coverage Area: 545 Sq. Degrees
Right Acension: 8 hours
Visibility: 90°N to 26°S
NGC 2419: Intergalactic Wanderer
NGC 2549: Galaxy
NGC 2683: Spiral galaxy
NGC 2782: Spiral galaxy
Best Viewed Objects/Stars
A multiple star. Through a small telescope it appears double, with components of magnitudes 4.9 and 7.3. An aperture of 3 in (75 mm) or more reveals that the brighter star is a close pair of 5th- and 6th-magnitude stars that orbit each other every 900 years.
An easily divided multiple star. A small telescope separates it into a double with components of magnitudes 5.8 and 6.9. Farther away, a third star of 8th magnitude should also be visible.
A tight double star requiring a telescope of 3 in (75 mm) aperture to split it into components of magnitudes 3.9 and 6.3.
A globular cluster notable for it remoteness. At 300,000 light-years away, it is more distant than the Magellanic Clouds and so appear small and of only 10th magnitude.