(IAAC) Comet miscataloged as a nebula by Bessel in 1809?
The following is a query from a meteor observing colleague
of mine, regarding a comet which he believes was discovered
but misidentified as a nebula by Bessel - a welcome change
from the more usual state of affairs in the Eighteenth and
Nineteenth Centuries, a la Monsieur Messier! :)
I am not aware of any catalog of nebulae ever published by
Bessel, but perhaps others on these lists will be familiar
with the particular references Gary mentions below?
Clear skies and happy lucubrating!
Lew Gramer, IMO, NAMN, Webb Society, NDSOS, ATMoB, NSAAC
From: Gary W. Kronk [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, 02 October, 2002 5:39 PM
Subject: RE: Are you receiving this?
I was trying to get in touch with you because I need your help. I am
wrapping up volume 2 of Cometography and am double checking some
facts. The other day I stumbled across a note I wrote to myself back
in 1981 about a possible comet found by Bessel on 1808 November 9.
Bessel apparently found this object as he was cataloging nebulae, or
he found it while looking at something else and registered it as a
nebula. Either way, later observers were never able to find it.
Sadly, I did not write down the source.
Do you or anyone on your deep sky observers mailing list research
things like this? Bessel's observation was probably published in the
Berliner Astronomische Jahrbuch (BAJ). I have all of the comet
articles, but did not copy any articles reporting other astronomical
objects. I would hazard a guess that H. L. d'Arrest may have been the
person that looked for this object and failed, because he was doing
this for a while and reported his findings in the Astronomische
Nachrichten (AN). As with BAJ, I have all of the comet articles in
the AN, but not articles reporting other objects.
Any help or direction you can give would be greatly appreciated.
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