In 72 Beautiful Galaxies we take you on a trip from relatively near to very far away in the universe, with images of 72 galaxies - and beyond that you will also see hundreds of galaxies as they are found in clusters. You will see that galaxies come in many shapes and sizes, with major categories being spirals and ellipticals. There are also many irregular galaxies and galaxies undergoing mergers or being cannibalized by other galaxies. Galaxies vary tremendously in their masses, in their luminosities, in their shapes, in their star formation rates, and in the amount of gas and dust they contain. And some are near, in cosmic terms, and some are billions of light-years away, at the edge of the universe. Many are found in groups, including our own Milky Way. Others are found within very large clusters.
This book has been designed to provide you with some appreciation of the variety of galaxy types, as well as their beauty, and some feeling for what astronomers are seeking to understand as we explore and discover more and more galaxies with the Great Telescopes of our day.