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Abbreviation:  Cep
English Name:  The Cepheus King
Genitive: Alderamin, sometimes spelt Al Deramin.
Hemisphere:  Northern Hemisphere
Location: Between the constellations of Cassiopeia and Draco.
Visible between latitudes:  
+90 and -10 degrees
Best season: Autumn
Seen in three seasons: Summer, Autumn & Winter
Best seen in:  October
Seen between: August and December
Right Ascension (RA):  22 hour
Declination (DEC):  +70 degrees
Area (square degrees):  588 (27th)

Cepheus (The Cepheus King)

  • This far northern constellation, almost to the North Celestial Pole (NCP), represents a King but its helping shape makes easy to locate as a house pattern.
  • In the sky, “northward” always means “toward the sky’s north pole,” or toward Polaris. Thus the roof of the house in Cepheus is pointing mostly north.

Messier Objects

  • No Messier objects in Cepheus.

Features of Interest

  • NGC 188 – Open Cluster, also known as Caldwell 1 (C01), very close to North Celestial Pole (NCP), under five degrees away.
  • NGC 7023 – The Iris Nebula, also known as Caldwell 4 (C04), is a bright reflection nebula – actually the cluster within the nebula; LBN 487.
  • NGC 6946 – The Firework Galaxy, also known as Caldwell 12 (C12), face-on spiral galaxy with colourful relating to a firework by the births and deaths of brilliant massive stars in the astrophotography.

Named Stars

  • Alderamin (Alpha Cep)
  • Alfirk (Beta Cep)
  • Alrai (Gamma Cep)
  • Herschel’s “Garnet Star” (Mu Cep)
  • Alkurhah (Xi Cep)
  • Al Kalb al Rai (Rho 2 Cep)


  • Photo of the constellation; Cepheus, as it appears to the naked eye. (Lines have been added for clarity.)
  • Sky Chart  –  Cepheus
  • List of stars in Cepheus.


Back to The 88 Constellations Lists  page.

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