Navigation

In the World of Isles, at least on that face from which Indarian is visible, navigation is rather different from on Earth. Rather than giving the latitude and longitude of a place, navigators give the elevation and direction of Indarian at that place, which translate directly into range and bearing to Elysion. The elevation of Indarian is measured with an astrolabe in the Archaic Period and with a sextant in the Classical Period and the Decadent Period. In the latter two periods bearing of Indarian is measured with a compass. In the Archaic Period the compass is unknown, and bearing of Indarian must be measured relative to some celestial fixed point, such as one of the celestial poles or the direction of the sun at midday. The existence of Indarian allows navigators on one half of the World of Isles to tell their exact position without knowing the time at any standard latitude. Chronometers are unnecessary.

Navigators with less formal education or without access to these instruments get to the rough locale of their destination measuring elevation and bearing by eye, and then zero in by observing winds and ocean swells (which are affected by islands), the behaviour of birds, and the clouds which form over land.

Over small areas, the apparent position of Indarian gives a good standard of direction.


Copyright © 1991 by Brett Evill. All rights reserved.