Abbreviation:  Sco
English Name:  The Scorpion
Genitive: Antares
Hemisphere:  Southern Hemisphere (Parts visible from the UK.)
Location: Between the constellations of Sagittarius and Lupus.
Visible between latitudes:  
+90 and -40 degrees
Best season: Summer
Seen in three seasons: Spring, Summer and Autumn
Best seen in:  July
Seen between: June and August.
Right Ascension (RA):  17 hour
Declination (DEC):  -40 degrees
Area (square degrees):  497 (33rd)

Scorpius  (The Scorpion)

  • This large constellation located in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • It lies in rich region of the Milky-Way, and like Sagittarius (The Archer), contains numerous objects of interest, in the same direction to the center of our Galaxy.
  • Our Sun passes through it briefly from 23 November to 29 November every year.

Messier Objects

  • M4  –  Globular Cluster; large and fairly loose – visible even with the naked-eye and a fuzzy in binoculars.
  • M6   –  Open Cluster; known as The Butterfly Cluster, can be resolved into individual stars in binoculars.
  • M7   –  Open Cluster; known as Ptolemy’s Cluster, best seen with low-magnification binoculars.
  • M80  –  Globular Cluster;  small/compact, readily seen in binoculars but just resolved with 6-inch telescopes.

Features of Interest

  • NGC 6153  –  Planetary Nebula; (pale blue / magnitude: +10.9) easily observed with 3-inch telescopes.
  • NGC 6231  –  Open Cluster; extremely large and bright – more spectacular than the Double Cluster in Perseus (The Perseus), and contains many very hot stars with a whole range types of stars; Blue-white, yellow and orange stars are visible.
  • NGC 6302  –  Planetary Nebula; known as The Bug Nebula, noticeably elongated including a bright center. (Magnitude: +9.6)
  • NGC 6388  –  Globular Cluster; readily visible in 3-inch telescopes but can’t be resolved easily because of small object.

Named Stars

  • Antares (Alpha Sco)
  • Graffias (Beta 1 Sco)
  • Dschubba (Delta Sco)
  • Sargas (Theta Sco)
  • Shaula (Lambda Sco)
  • Jabbah (Nu Sco)
  • Grafias (Xi Sco)
  • Alniyat (Sigma Sco)
  • Alniyat (Tau Sco)
  • Lesath (Upsilon Sco)


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


Back to The 88 Constellations Lists  page.

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