Twin City Amateur Astronomers
All Constellations

Coma Berenices

Berenice's Hair
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Coma Berenices is a moderately sized constellation located between Leo and Boötes above Virgo. Its position is far from the Milky Way at the North Galactic Pole. Coma Berenices has a profusion of galaxies which are part of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies. These galaxies are thought to be the Local Supercluster of which our Milky Way galaxy is a part. In Mythology, Queen Berenice of Egypt was said to have cut off her long hair and made it an offering to the gods for the safe return from battle of her husband, King Ptolemy II. Meeting with favor, King Ptolemy returned a safely and her hair found a celestial home. Visually, the stars in the northwest area of the constellation resemble her flowing tresses. However, the Greeks considered the cluster of stars to be the bushy end of the tail of Leo.