apparent magnitude


Definition of apparent magnitude

: the luminosity of a celestial body (such as a star) as observed from the earth — compare absolute magnitude

Examples of apparent magnitude in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Vega is how the apparent magnitude of stars—their brightness—is measured. Jamie Carter, Forbes, 31 May 2021 For example, Neptune has an apparent magnitude of about 7.7. Jackie Wattles, CNN, 2 July 2020 The dimmest stars humans can see with the naked eye have an apparent magnitude (intrinsic magnitude modified by distance) of about 6 (lower numbers are brighter). Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, 26 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'apparent magnitude.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of apparent magnitude

1708, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About apparent magnitude

Time Traveler for apparent magnitude

Time Traveler

The first known use of apparent magnitude was in 1708

See more words from the same year

Statistics for apparent magnitude

Last Updated

8 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Apparent magnitude.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jul. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on apparent magnitude Encyclopedia article about apparent magnitude


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!