The magnetic structure of high purity single crystals of holmium has been studied by neutron diffraction techniques. Although the general characteristics of the magnetic structure have been found to agree with earlier measurements, some discrepancies have been resolved and new features have been observed. The magnetic form factor has been measured and compared with relativistic atomic calculations. The low temperature structure (T<20 K) is that of a conical ferromagnet with wave vector (1/6)(2π/c) along the c axis. The basal plane moment is 9.7 μB and the c‐axis ferromagnetic component is 1.6 μB at T=6 K. Bunching of the basal plane moments around the easy hexagonal direction has been observed below T=50 K. Evidence for asphericity in the magnetization density is presented and discussed. The wave vector of the basal plane modulation decreases monotonically with temperature in general accordance with the Elliott–Wedgewood theory. Several inflection points were observed, however, which correspond to commensurability with the chemical lattice. The measured temperature dependence of the c‐ and a‐axis lattice constants shows significant magnetostriction. The possibility of a c‐axis modulated moment is discussed.

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