multiple-star

multiple star

noun Astronomy.
three or more stars lying close together in the celestial sphere and usually united in a single gravitational system.

Origin:
1840–50

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World English Dictionary
multiple star
 
n
See also binary star a system of three or more stars associated by gravitation

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
multiple star  
A system of three or more stars that are bound together by gravity and orbit a common center of mass. The group generally appears as a single star to the naked eye. Astronomers believe that most stars in the universe are part of multiple or binary systems. Alpha Centauri, the closest star to our Sun, is a multiple star system containing three bodies. See also binary star.
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