Celestial Atlas
(NGC 3500 - 3549) ←     NGC Objects: NGC 3550 - 3599 Link for sharing this page on Facebook     → (NGC 3600 - 3649)
Click here for Introductory Material
QuickLinks:
3550, 3551, 3552, 3553, 3554, 3555, 3556, 3557, 3558, 3559, 3560, 3561, 3562, 3563, 3564, 3565, 3566,
3567, 3568, 3569, 3570, 3571, 3572, 3573, 3574, 3575, 3576, 3577, 3578, 3579, 3580, 3581, 3582, 3583,
3584, 3585, 3586, 3587, 3588, 3589, 3590, 3591, 3592, 3593, 3594, 3595, 3596, 3597, 3598, 3599

Page last updated Aug 24, 2015
Done with NGC entries; need to check all other Dreyer references

WORKING: Add discovery information / positions /physical data (per Steinicke / Corwin)

NGC 3550
Discovered (Apr 11, 1785) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3550 (= GC 2319 = JH 829 = WH III 351, 1860 RA 11 03 04, NPD 60 28.8) is "faint (perhaps variable?), small, round, brighter middle, 9th magnitude star 1 arcmin to east, 1st of 4", the others being NGC 3552, 3554 and 3561.
Physical Information:

NGC 3551
Discovered (Aug 24, 1883) by
Lewis Swift
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3551 (Swift list I (#10), 1860 RA 11 03 05, NPD 67 30.4) is "most extremely faint, very small, round, southwestern of 2", the other being NGC 3555.
Physical Information:

NGC 3552
Discovered (Apr 11, 1785) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3552 (= GC 2320 = JH 832 = WH III 352, 1860 RA 11 03 10, NPD 60 33.1) is "extremely faint, very small, 2nd of 4", the others being NGC 3550, 3554 and 3561.
Physical Information: Noted in the entry for NGC 3553 as forming a double nebula with that object.

NGC 3553
Discovered (Mar 13, 1885) by
Guillaume Bigourdan
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3553 (Bigourdan (list I #45), 1860 RA 11 03 10, NPD 60 32.3) is "extremely faint, very small, forms double nebula with III 352", (WH) III 52 being NGC 3552.
Physical Information:

NGC 3554
Discovered (Dec 24, 1827) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3554 (= GC 2321 = JH 833, 1860 RA 11 03 12, NPD 60 36.4) is "very faint, pretty small, round, brighter middle, 3rd of 4", the others being NGC 3550, 3552 and 3561.
Physical Information:

NGC 3555
Discovered (Aug 24, 1883) by
Lewis Swift
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3555 (Swift list I (#11), 1860 RA 11 03 15, NPD 67 29.9) is "very faint, round, northeastern of 2", the other being NGC 3551.
Physical Information:

NGC 3556 (= PGC 34030 =
M108)
Discovered (Feb 19, 1781) by Pierre Méchain but position not determined
Observed (Mar 24, 1781) by Charles Messier but position not determined until later
Discovered (Apr 17, 1789) by William Herschel
Also observed (Feb 10, 1831) by John Herschel
Also observed (Nov 8, 1864) by George Rümker
Appended (1953) to the Messier Catalog by Owen Gingerich as M108
A magnitude 10.0 spiral galaxy (type SB(s)cd?) in Ursa Major (RA 11 11 29.4, Dec +55 40 22)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3556 (= GC 2318 = JH 831 = WH V 46, G. Rümker, 1860 RA 11 03 18, NPD 33 34.0) is "considerably bright, very large, very much extended 79°, pretty bright middle, mottled but not resolved". The position precesses to RA 11 11 31.5, Dec +55 40 38, right on the galaxy listed above and the description fits, so the identification is certain.
Additional Notes (about its listing as M108): Méchain observed this nebula on Feb 19, 1781 and noted its approximate position relative to M97, but as of his letter of May 6, 1783 to Bernoulli, had still not gotten around to measuring an accurate position. Messier also noted the nebula while observing M97, and apparently meant to add it to his Catalog, as he marked it as "98" in the preliminary manuscript; but he failed to measure its position before he had to send the manuscript to the publisher, so it was not included in the published Catalog. However, he did add a handwritten position to his personal copy of the published Catalog, which Owen Gingerich was able to use in 1953 to identify it as NGC 3556; and as a result of Messier's obvious original intention to add the nebula to his Catalog, Gingerich suggested adding it as M108. The failure of its original discoverers to publish their observations meant that neither Herschel nor Dreyer knew of the original observations when they compiled the General Catalog and New General Catalog, so there was no mention of Méchain or Messier in the NGC entry for the galaxy.
Physical Information: Apparent size 8.6 by 2.4 arcmin?
NOAO image of spiral galaxy NGC 3556, also known as M108
Above, an NOAO view of M108 (AURA, NSF, NOAO)
Below, a 9 arcmin wide SDSS image of the galaxy
SDSS image of spiral galaxy NGC 3556, also known as M108

NGC 3557
Discovered (Apr 21, 1835) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3557 (= GC 2322 = JH 3319, 1860 RA 11 03 20, NPD 126 46.8) is "bright, small, round, pretty gradually much brighter middle, 1st of 3", the others being NGC 3564 and 3568.
Physical Information:

NGC 3558
Discovered (Apr 15, 1866) by
Heinrich d'Arrest
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3558 (= GC 5549, d'Arrest, 1860 RA 11 03 22, NPD 60 40.5) is "pretty faint, small".
Physical Information:

NGC 3559 (=
NGC 3560)
Discovered (Apr 12, 1784) by William Herschel (and later listed as NGC 3559)
Also observed (date?) by Heinrich d'Arrest (and later listed as NGC 3559)
Discovered (Apr 6, 1831) by John Herschel (and later listed as NGC 3560)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3559 (= GC 2323 = WH III 79, d'Arrest, 1860 RA 11 03 26, NPD 77 13.3) is "extremely faint, pretty small, a little extended, mottled but not resolved".
Physical Information:

NGC 3560 (=
NGC 3559)
Discovered (Apr 12, 1784) by William Herschel (and later listed as NGC 3559)
Also observed (date?) by Heinrich d'Arrest (and later listed as NGC 3559)
Discovered (Apr 6, 1831) by John Herschel (and later listed as NGC 3560)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3560 (= GC 2324 = JH 834, 1860 RA 11 03 26, NPD 78 03.6) is "faint, small, round, gradually brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3561 (= PGC 33991, and with
PGC 33992 = Arp 105)
Discovered (Mar 30, 1827) by John Herschel
A 14th-magnitude lenticular galaxy (type S0/a?) in Ursa Major (RA 11 11 13.2, Dec +28 41 47)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3561 (= GC 2326 = JH 835, 1860 RA 11 03 36, NPD 60 32.8) is "very faint, pretty large, 4th of 4", the others being NGC 3550, 3552 and 3554.
Physical Information: Apparent size about 1.1 by 0.8 arcmin. Used by the Arp Atlas as an example of an elliptical galaxy connected to a spiral galaxy (PGC 33992). A Seyfert galaxy (type Sy 3). (Note: NED muddles the galaxy types for Arp 105, listing both types for each galaxy.)
SDSS image of lenticular galaxy NGC 3561 and spiral galaxy PGC 33992, which comprise Arp 105, showing the long counter-tail of the spiral galaxy
Above, a 2.4 by 6 arcmin wide closeup of NGC 3561 and PGC 33992, which comprise Arp 105
Below, a 12 arcmin wide region centered on the pair, also showing NGC 3554
SDSS image of region near lenticular galaxy NGC 3561 and spiral galaxy PGC 33992, which comprise Arp 105; also shown is elliptical galaxy NGC 3554

PGC 33992 (with
NGC 3561 = Arp 105)
Not an NGC object, but listed here since a component of Arp 105
A 16th-magnitude spiral galaxy (type SAB(rs)a? pec) in Ursa Major (RA 11 11 13.0, Dec +28 42 42)
Physical Information: Apparent size of main galaxy about 1.0 by 0.6 arcmin; including the long counter-tail, about 3.8 arcmin. Used in the Arp Atlas as an example of an elliptical galaxy (NGC 3561, which see for images) connected to a spiral galaxy. (Note: NED muddles the galaxy types for Arp 105, listing both types for each galaxy.)

NGC 3562
Discovered (Apr 3, 1785) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3562 (= GC 2325 = JH 830 = WH II 337, 1860 RA 11 03 38, NPD 16 21.5) is "pretty faint, pretty small, a little extended, gradually brighter middle, 15th magnitude star 70 arcsec distant at position angle 22°".
Physical Information:

NGC 3563
Discovered (Mar 18, 1869) by
Otto Struve
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3563 (= GC 5550, Otto Struve, 1860 RA 11 03 49, NPD 62 16) is "pretty faint, pretty large, 8th magnitude star 2 arcmin to north".
Physical Information:

NGC 3564
Discovered (Apr 21, 1835) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3564 (= GC 2327 = JH 3320, 1860 RA 11 03 57, NPD 126 46.7) is "pretty faint, small, round, brighter middle, 2nd of 3", the others being NGC 3557 and 3568.
Physical Information:

NGC 3565
Discovered (1886) by
Ormond Stone
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3565 (Ormond Stone list I (#185), 1860 RA 11 03, NPD 109 17.2) is "very faint, very small, round, gradually brighter middle and nucleus, 1st of 2", the other being NGC 3566.
Physical Information:

NGC 3566
Discovered (1886) by
Ormond Stone
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3566 (Ormond Stone list I (#186), 1860 RA 11 03, NPD 109 17.2) is "most extremely faint, extremely small, round, gradually brighter middle, 2nd of 2", the other being NGC 3565.
Physical Information:

NGC 3567
Discovered (Apr 13, 1784) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3567 (= GC 2328 = JH 836 = WH III 89, 1860 RA 11 04 02, NPD 83 25.1) is "extremely faint, round, suddenly brighter middle, mottled but not resolved".
Physical Information:

NGC 3568
Discovered (Apr 21, 1835) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3568 (= GC 2329 = JH 3321, 1860 RA 11 04 10, NPD 126 42.2) is "very faint, pretty large, round, star involved, 3 bright stars near, 3rd of 3", the others being NGC 3557 and 3564.
Physical Information:

NGC 3569
Discovered (Apr 27, 1864) by
Heinrich d'Arrest
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3569 (= GC 5551, d'Arrest, 1860 RA 11 04 24, NPD 53 47.6) is "faint, very small, stellar".
Physical Information:

NGC 3570
Discovered (Mar 15, 1877) by
Édouard Stephan
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3570 (Stephan list IX (#23), 1860 RA 11 04 31, NPD 61 39.0) is "very faint, very small, round, brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3571 (=
NGC 3544)
Discovered (Mar 8, 1790) by William Herschel (and later listed as NGC 3571)
Also observed (Jan 7, 1886) by Ormond Stone (and later listed as NGC 3544)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3571 (= GC 2330 = WH II 819, 1860 RA 11 04 32, NPD 107 31.5) is "pretty faint, pretty large, irregular figure, brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3572
Discovered (Mar 14, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3572 (= GC 2331 = JH 3323, 1860 RA 11 04 33, NPD 149 28.9) is a "cluster, pretty rich, a little compressed".
Physical Information:

NGC 3573
Discovered (Apr 20, 1835) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3573 (= GC 2332 = JH 3322, 1860 RA 11 04 40, NPD 126 05.5) is "extremely faint, small, round, gradually a little brighter middle, 3 stars of 11th magnitude to east".
Physical Information:

NGC 3574
Discovered (Mar 15, 1877) by
Édouard Stephan
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3574 (Stephan list IX (#24), 1860 RA 11 04 40, NPD 61 36.9) is "extremely faint".
Physical Information:

NGC 3575 (=
NGC 3162)
Discovered (Mar 12, 1784) by William Herschel (and later listed as NGC 3162)
Discovered (Feb 21, 1863) by Heinrich d'Arrest (and later listed as NGC 3575)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3575 (= GC 5552, d'Arrest, 1860 RA 11 05 44, NPD 66 35.2) is "pretty bright, pretty large, round, 11th magnitude star to west".
Physical Information:

NGC 3576
Discovered (Mar 16, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3576 (= GC 2333 = JH 3324, 1860 RA 11 05 53, NPD 150 37.0) is "faint, a little extended, 1st of 6", the others being NGC 3579, 3581, 3582, 3584 and 3586.
Physical Information:

NGC 3577
Discovered (Apr 1, 1788) by
William Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3577 (= GC 2334 = WH III 723, 1860 RA 11 05 53, NPD 40 53.5) is "extremely faint, very small, preceding (western) of 2", the other being NGC 3583.
Physical Information:

NGC 3578
Discovered (Dec 16, 1827) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3578 (= GC 2335 = JH 837, 1860 RA 11 05 54, NPD 105 11.8) is a "doubtful object, probably a nebula".
Physical Information:

NGC 3579
Discovered (Mar 14, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3579 (= GC 2336 = JH 3325, 1860 RA 11 05 56, NPD 150 28.1) is "faint, a little extended, suddenly brighter middle, 2nd of 6", the others being NGC 3576, 3581, 3582, 3584 and 3586.
Physical Information:

NGC 3580
Discovered (1876) by
Wilhelm Tempel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3580 (= GC 5553, Tempel list I (#32), 1860 RA 11 06 00, NPD 85 35.7) is "very faint, 14th magnitude star to east".
Physical Information:

NGC 3581
Discovered (Mar 14, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3581 (= GC 2337 = JH 3326, 1860 RA 11 06 03, NPD 150 33.0) is a "12th magnitude star with fan-shaped nebula attached, 3rd of 6", the others being NGC 3576, 3579, 3582, 3584 and 3586.
Physical Information:

NGC 3582
Discovered (Mar 14, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3582 (= GC 2338 = JH 3327, 1860 RA 11 06 14, NPD 150 30.6) is "bright, brighter stellar middle, 4th of 6", the others being NGC 3576, 3579, 3581, 3584 and 3586.
Physical Information:

NGC 3583
Discovered (Feb 5, 1788) by
William Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3583 (= GC 2339 = WH II 728, 1860 RA 11 06 18, NPD 40 51.5) is "pretty bright, pretty large, round, very gradually much brighter middle", implied in the entry for NGC 3577 as being the 2nd of 2.
Physical Information:

NGC 3584
Discovered (Mar 16, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3584 (= GC 2340 = JH 3329, 1860 RA 11 06 21, NPD 150 26.7) is "faint, large, extended 0°, brighter middle, 5th of 6", the others being NGC 3576, 3579, 3581, 3582 and 3586.
Physical Information:

NGC 3585
Discovered (Dec 9, 1784) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3585 (= GC 2341 = JH 3328 = WH II 269, 1860 RA 11 06 28, NPD 115 59.9) is "bright, pretty large, extended, very suddenly much brighter middle and nucleus, forming a triangle with 2 bright stars".
Physical Information:

NGC 3586
Discovered (Mar 14, 1834) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3586 (= GC 2342 = JH 3330, 1860 RA 11 06 31, NPD 150 35.5) is "extremely faint, small, extended 160°±, 6th of 6", the others being NGC 3576, 3579, 3581, 3582 and 3584.
Physical Information:

NGC 3587 (=
M97), The Owl Nebula
Discovered (Feb 16, 1781) by Pierre Méchain
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
A 10th-magnitude planetary nebula in Ursa Major (RA 11 14 48, Dec +55 01 10)
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3587 (= GC 2343 = JH 838, Méchain, M97, 1860 RA 11 06 40, NPD 34 13.3) is "a very remarkable object, a planetary nebula, very bright, very large, round, very very gradually then very suddenly bright middle, 150 arcsec diameter".
Physical Information:
(Image credit: Gary White and Verlenne Monroe/Adam Block/AURA/NSF/NOAO)


NGC 3588
Discovered (Aug 26, 1883) by
Lewis Swift
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3588 (Swift list I (#12), 1860 RA 11 06 45, NPD 68 50.9) is "very faint, considerably small, 4 seconds of time east and 8 arcmin south of δ Leonis".
Physical Information:

NGC 3589
Discovered (Apr 9, 1793) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3589 (= GC 2344 = JH 839 = WH III 921, 1860 RA 11 06 52, NPD 28 32.5) is "very faint, large, extended, very gradually brighter middle, in triangle of little (faint) stars".
Physical Information:

NGC 3590
Discovered (Feb 4, 1835) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3590 (= GC 2345 = JH 3332, 1860 RA 11 06 59, NPD 150 02.3) is a "cluster, pretty rich, compressed, extended".
Physical Information:

NGC 3591
Discovered (Mar 27, 1786) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3591 (= GC 2346 = JH 3331 = WH III 529, 1860 RA 11 07 05, NPD 103 19.8) is "very faint, small, irregularly round, a little brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3592
Discovered (Mar 4, 1865) by
Albert Marth
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3592 (= GC 5554, Marth 216, 1860 RA 11 07 07, NPD 71 58) is "extremely faint, small, pretty much extended, position angle 60°".
Physical Information:

NGC 3593
Discovered (Apr 12, 1784) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3593 (= GC 2347 = JH 840 = WH I 29, 1860 RA 11 07 18, NPD 76 25.4) is "bright, considerably large, extended 90±, pretty suddenly much brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3594
Discovered (Apr 14, 1789) by
William Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3594 (= GC 2348 = WH III 770, 1860 RA 11 07 26, NPD 33 29.5) is "very faint, very small, stellar".
Physical Information:

NGC 3595
Discovered (Feb 5, 1788) by
William Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3595 (= GC 2349 = WH III 706, 1860 RA 11 07 30, NPD 41 45.5) is "very faint, very small, very little extended, stellar, considerably bright star to north".
Physical Information:

NGC 3596
Discovered (Apr 8, 1784) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Also observed (1906) by Edward Barnard
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3596 (= GC 2350 = JH 841 = WH II 102, 1860 RA 11 07 44, NPD 74 26.9) is "pretty faint, large, round, gradually a little brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3597
Discovered (Mar 21, 1835) by
John Herschel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3597 (= GC 2351 = JH 3333, 1860 RA 11 07 49, NPD 112 57.7) is "very faint, pretty small, round, brighter middle".
Physical Information:

NGC 3598
Discovered (Mar 4, 1865) by
Albert Marth
Also observed (1876) by Wilhelm Tempel
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3598 (= GC 5555, Marth 217, Tempel list I (#??), 1860 RA 11 07 50, NPD 71 58) is "faint, very small, stellar, star to north".
Physical Information:

NGC 3599
Discovered (Mar 14, 1784) by
William Herschel
Also observed (date?) by John Herschel
Also observed (Apr 18, 1882) by Édouard Stephan
Historical Identification: Per Dreyer, NGC 3599 (= GC 2352 = JH 843 = WH II 49, 1860 RA 11 08 04, NPD 71 07.7) is "bright, pretty small, round, pretty gradually much brighter middle".
Physical Information:
Celestial Atlas
(NGC 3500 - 3549) ←     NGC Objects: NGC 3550 - 3599     → (NGC 3600 - 3649)