This brilliant photo taken by the Hubble Space Telescope reveals a scattering of dust clouds around the galaxy NGC 7049. The dust clouds are silhouetted by the light of millions of background stars and frame a galaxy that is about 150 000 light years wide. The NGC 7049 galaxy lies within the Indus constellation which was created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtma.
Plancius was born in 1555 with the name Pieter Plaatevoet (lit,”Peter Flatfoot“) in Dranouter in what is now West Flanders. He was a student of theology in England and Germany and became a minister in the Dutch Reformed Church in 1579. Fearing persecution under the Spanish in 1585, he fled from Brussels to Amsterdam where he became interested in cartography, navigation and the making of starcharts.