Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

July 28, 1996

Huck Finn's New Sky View
Credit : R. Williams, The HDF Team (STScI), NASA,

"We had the sky up there, all speckled with stars, and we used to lay on our backs and look up at them, and discuss about whether they was made or only just happened."

(from Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn)

Explanation: Even the faintest stars Huck and Jim could see as their raft drifted down the Mississippi were in our own Galaxy. The faintest objects astronomers can see today are the distant galaxies -- entire systems of stars comparable to our own Milky Way, which fill the Universe. Despite the advances, the sense of wonder so simply expressed in Huck's musing is still the same.

Tomorrow's picture: A Dust Jet From Hale-Bopp

< Archive | Index | Search | Calendar | Glossary | Education | About APOD >

Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA/ GSFC
&: Michigan Tech. U.