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Glossary of Astronomy Terms
beginning with letter B
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bear Tweet Definition of bear Like Definition of bear on Facebook
  1. A large omnivorous mammal, related to the dog and raccoon, having shaggy hair, a very small tail, and flat feet; a member of family Ursidae, particularly of subfamily Ursinae.
  2. (colloquial) An animal that resembles a bear, such as a koala bear, koala or ant bear.
  3. (finance) An investor who sells commodities, securities or futures in anticipation of a fall in prices.
Bears look for over-priced securities to sell short.
  1. (rfv-sense) (finance) A market in which prices are falling.
  2. (colloquial) A problem that is very difficult to solve.
  3. (slang) A large hairy man, especially one who is gay.
verb (bears, bearing, bore, or, archaic, bare, born, borne, or, archaic, yborn)
  1. (transitive) To carry something.
    • 2005, w:Plato, Plato, Sophist. Translation by Lesley Brown. w:Stephanus pagination, 234b.
    • : imitations that the same name as the things
      1. (transitive) To be equipped with something.
      the right to arms
      1. (transitive) To declare as testimony.
      The jury could see he was bearing false witness.
      1. (transitive) To put up with something.
      2. (transitive) To give birth to someone or something.
      In Troy she becomes Paris' wife, bearing him several children, all of whom die in infancy.
      1. (transitive) To produce or yield something, such as fruit or crops.
      2. (intransitive) To be in a specific direction from the observer"s position.
      The harbour bears North by Northeast.
  1. (finance, investments) Characterized by or believing to benefit of declining prices in securities markets.
The great market starting in 1929 scared a whole generation of investors.
Betelgeuse Tweet Definition of Betelgeuse Like Definition of Betelgeuse on Facebook
proper noun 
  1. (star) A bright-red supergiant intrinsic variable star, the second brightest star in the constellation Orion; Alpha (α) Orionis. It is the tenth brightest star in the nighttime, and one of the largest stars known.
Big Dipper Tweet Definition of Big Dipper Like Definition of Big Dipper on Facebook
proper noun 
  1. (constellation) A bright circumpolar asterism of the northern sky, said to resemble a ladle or cart. It is part of the constellation Ursa Major and includes the stars Mizar, Dubhe, and Alkaid.
binary Tweet Definition of binary Like Definition of binary on Facebook
noun (plural binaries)
  1. (context, mathematics, computing) (uncountable) The base-2 number system, which uses only the digits 0 and 1.
  2. (computing) An executable computer file.
  3. (astronomy) A star system consisting of only two stars.
adjective (not comparable)
  1. Being in a state of one of two mutually exclusive conditions, such as on or off, true or false, 6 or not 6, or the presence or absence of an electrical pulse.
Binary states are often abstracted as 1 and 0 in computer science.
  1. Concerning logic whose subject matter concerns binary states.
  2. (context, arithmetic, computing) Concerning numbers and mathematical calculations using the binary number system.
  3. Having two equally important parts.
binary star
binary poison
  1. Related to something with two parts.
A distribution is a statistical distribution with only two categories.
  1. (computing): Refers to data consisting of arbitrary values, as opposed to that which can be interpreted as plain or ASCII text.
He downloaded the distribution for Linux, then burned it to DVD.
bird of paradise Tweet Definition of bird of paradise Like Definition of bird of paradise on Facebook
noun (pl=birds of paradise)
  1. (zoology) Any of various passerine birds of the family Paradisaeidae native to Oceania. In many of the species the breeding plumage of the males is brightly coloured.
  2. (botany): A showy tropical flower of the genus Strelitzia, native to Madagascar.
black dwarf Tweet Definition of black dwarf Like Definition of black dwarf on Facebook
  1. (astronomy) a hypothesized white dwarf that has cooled down and no longer emit visible light
blue giant Tweet Definition of blue giant Like Definition of blue giant on Facebook
  1. (star) a very hot and very luminous star that emits visible light in the blue portion of the spectrum
blue straggler Tweet Definition of blue straggler Like Definition of blue straggler on Facebook
  1. (astronomy) a unusually hot and blue star in globular clusters
body Tweet Definition of body Like Definition of body on Facebook
noun (bodies)
  1. The physical structure of a human or animal seen as one single organism.
I saw them walking from a distance, their bodies strangely angular in the dawn light.
  1. The fleshly or corporeal nature of a human, as opposed to the spirit or soul.
The is driven by desires, but the soul is at peace.
  1. A corpse.
Her was found at four o'clock, just two hours after the murder.
  1. The torso, the main structure of a human or animal frame excluding the extremity, extremities (limbs, head, tail).
The boxer took a blow to the .
  1. The largest or most important part of anything, as distinct from its appendages or accessory, accessories.
The bumpers and front tyres were ruined, but the of the car was in remarkable shape.
  1. (archaic) The section of a dress extending from the neck to the waist, excluding the arms.
Penny was in the scullery, pressing the of her new dress.
  1. An organisation, company or other authoritative group.
The local train operating company is the managing for this section of track.
  1. A group of men or people having a common purpose or opinion; a mass.
I was escorted from the building by a of armed security guards.
  1. A unified collection of details, knowledge or information.
We have now amassed a of evidence which points to one conclusion.
  1. Any physical object or material thing.
All bodies are held together by internal forces.
  1. Substance; physical presence.
We have given to what was just a vague idea.
  1. Comparative viscosity, solidity or substance (in wine, colours etc.).
The rioja, sadly, lacked .
  1. (programming) The code of a subroutine, contrasted to its signature and parameters.W:Subroutine, W
bolide Tweet Definition of bolide Like Definition of bolide on Facebook
  1. Any extraterrestrial body that collides with Earth
  2. An extremely bright meteor
  3. A fireball
bow shock Tweet Definition of bow shock Like Definition of bow shock on Facebook
  1. the region of the magnetosphere in which the solar wind slows from supersonic to subsonic
brown dwarf Tweet Definition of brown dwarf Like Definition of brown dwarf on Facebook
  1. (star):a star that is typically about the volume of the planet Jupiter, which has mass approaching that of a star, but insufficient to ignite its elements and cause it to burn as a true star, except that of deuterium, and sometimes lithium.

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