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When you look at a distant galaxy you are not only seeing into space but far into the past as well The light from one of the galaxies we see today actually started its journey toward Earth more than two million years agoThe discovery of galaxies 1 began in the early 1400s by Polish astronomers and continues to be studied today Knowing as we do today that the universe is amenable to investigation and that telescopes can examine millions of galaxies at distances of millions of light years 2 Though they shine with light of many billions of suns most galaxies are so distant that they look faint There are only three galaxies visible to the naked eye from the surface of the earth These are the two Magellanic Clouds which lie in the southern skies and the Andromeda Galaxy whose tenuous glow was aptly described by a seventeenth century observerThe form and variety of galaxies differ in size and mass Normal galaxies or often-called spiral galaxies are mostly large The general anatomy can be described in three ways a central region or elliptical based on the shape and centered upon the nucleus and a spherical corona or halo composed primarily of old dwarf stars 3 and a globular cluster 4 Spiral galaxies are probably formed from giant clouds of rapidly spinning hydrogen gases Some of the gases pulled to the center by gravity and condensed into stars The rotating disk of gases and stars form arms 5 and that is what gives the galaxy its spiral shapeElliptical galaxies far outnumber the spiral galaxies An elliptical galaxy looks like a squashed ball The Centaurus A 6 is an elliptical galaxy It is one of the brightest and largest galaxies known with three times as many stars as our galaxy Scientist think that the center of this galaxy is experiencing giant explosions of million of stars hurling out clouds of hot gas The central region is
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