Schaeberle's Comet


SINCE my last remarks I have had an opportunity to examine this fine object with the 6″ Cooke equatorial. On Wednesday evening, the 24th, simultaneously with the Great Bear stars, it was easily seen as soon as twilight set in, near the horizon and considerably more to the west than on the 21st. With a comet eyepiece it presented, in spite of its low altitude, a sharp and well defined figure. The nucleus was stellar-like, with, I thought, a still brighter minute central point. No jets of light proceeded directly from it, but it appeared surrounded by a circular nebulosity of greater extent than the base of the tail, and giving the headed form to the comet frequently seen in old drawings of these objects. The tail was straight, long, and luminous, with a central ray of condensed light which gave it a cylindrical look. When first examined three small stars were involved in the tail without any apparent diminishing of their brightness; while two others below served to define the limit of the tail's visibility in the comet eyepiece. This measured two degrees only, but both it and the nucleus were of a peculiarly fine pale blue tint. I send a drawing of the telescopic appearance of the comet at 8h. 40m. On the nights of the 27th and 28th the comet was again examined at about 8h. 30m. Under a lower power Kellner the appearance was that of a round comet with a central nuoleus and circular coma. The tail was to be seen, bait was quite faint, and as before was less at the base than the width of the coma. Dr. ?de Konboly I are has examined the specturm of this comet, and found it a faint continuous one, with three telrably bright lines, at following positions:—

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CAPRON, J. Schaeberle's Comet. Nature 24, 430–431 (1881).

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