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Dr. Wolfgang Steinicke 

Deep-Sky Objects (catalogues, history, visual observing) - Cosmology - Theoretical Physics

Last update: 26 January 2016

Current Matters

Current versions of my files containing historic or modern data - there is nothing comparable!

The observer page and the references were completely revised.

Historic M - Historical data of Messier's catalogue (M)

Historic WH - Historical data of William Herschel's three catalogues (H)

Historic JH - Historical data of John Herschel's Slough and Cape catalogues (h)

Historic Au - Historical data of Arthur Auwers' list of 50 new nebulae (Au)

Historic GC - Historical data of John Herschel's General Catalogue (GC) and Dreyer's "Supplement" (GCS)

Historic NGCIC - Historical data of Dreyer's New General Catalogue (NGC) and Index catalogue (IC)

NGC/IC Observers - Biographical information of all NGC/IC observers

Revised NGC/IC - Revised data and modern identifications for all NGC/IC objects

Please give the source, when using this data! They are available only here - and not on the website of the NGC/IC project! Particularly the "Historically Corrected NGC" (HCNGC, Bob Erdmann), presented there, is a mere copy of an outdated version of my "Historic NGC" (without giving any acknowledgment).


23  March 2016, Royal Dublin Society, Dublin (IRL): "Lord Rosse and the Deep-Sky Astronomy at Birr Castle - An Important Step in the History of Science"


100 years           Arthur Auwers died (24.1.1915)

  Baron v. Engelhardt died (17.5.1915)

150 years           George P. Bond died (17.2.1865)

                          William H. Smyth died (9.9.1865)

                          Walter Gale born (27.11.1865)

                          Lawrence Parsons starts observing at Birr Castle (1865)

200 years           Joseph Baxendell born (19.4.1815)

350 years           Abraham Ihle discovered M 22 (26.8.1665)

For Michael Hoskin's latest book, The Construction of the Heavens: William Herschel's Cosmology (Cambridge University Press, January 2012), I have written comments about the involved deep-sky objects.

The enhanced, English version of my comprehensive study on the history of the NGC has been published in August 2010 by Cambridge University Press. The 660-page book is titled Observing an Cataloguing Nebulae and Star Clusters - from Herschel to Dreyer's New General Catalogue. Look here for more details.


A comprehensive biography on Lord Rosse, editied by Charles Mollan, will appear in Juli 2014, published by Manchester University Press. I contribute with 70-page chapter on "Birr Castle Observations of Non-stellar Objects and the Development of Nebular Theories".

My "Revised NGC/IC" is used in the NGC-IC Photographic Catalogue by Numazawa and Wakyia. The large-format, 720-page book shows DSS-images of all NGC/IC objects!

Selected papers (pdf):

The M51 Mystery - Lord Rosse, Robinson, South and the Discovery of Spiral Structure in 1845

William & John Herschel's problems in cataloguing M 81 and M 82

Biography of John Louis Emil Dreyer

  Further Content of my Homepage
HZ 46 Compact Galaxies, AGN, Quasars, and Variable Extragalactic Objects
Double quasar Catalogue of Bright Quasars and BL Lacertae-Objects (KHQ)
KDG 189 Catalogue of Groups of Galaxies (KDG)
VdS-Journal Bibliography (Books, Articles)
FG Deep-Sky Membership in Astronomical Associations, Workgroups, and Projects
My first telescope Short "Astronomical" Biography

Dr. Wolfgang Steinicke
Gottenheimerstr. 18
D-79224 Umkirch
Tel. +49 (0) 7665 51863