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Whirlpool Galaxy. Illustration of the Whirlpool Galaxy (M51, NGC 5194) made by William Parsons, third Earl of Rosse (1800-1867). The irregular galaxy NGC 5195 is at upper left. Rosse, an Irish astronomer and telescope builder, made this illustration by using a giant reflecting telescope which he built. Completed in 1845, it became known as the "Leviathan of Corkstown". The telescope had a primary mirror with a diameter of 1.8 metres. With this instrument he was the first to recognise the spiral shape of some fifteen 'nebulae', including M51. In 1850 Rosse published his work on nebulae in a book entitled "Observations on the Nebulae". North is at top.
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