Record

Compass

< 50 of 226 > Back

made in China

Postcard of Compass.
000-100-104-308-C
© National Museums Scotland

Compass

This simple Chinese magnetic compass dates from around 1850.

This small Chinese compass is made from wood, with an artificially-induced magnetic needle. This is protected by glass, and points to one of the 24 Chinese compass points surrounding the bearing pan.

The Chinese knew about the properties of magnets long before they were discovered in the West. Their directional compasses, however, always pointed south.


Record details

To search on related items, click any linked text below.

Online ID: 000-100-104-308-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  T.1861.716.132
Date: Around 1850
c. 1850
Material:
Dimensions:
What: Compass, mariner's
Subject: 9. NAVIGATION (Departmental Classification)
Who:
Where: China
China, Chusan Island
Event:
Description: Mariner's compass, wanting a needle, and taken at Chusan Island, China, c. 1850
References:
  • China: 7000 Years of Discovery, China's Ancient Technology, San Francisco, 1983, pp 21-22. 
  • Joseph Needham, Sceince and Civilisation in China vol. IV part 1, Cambridge, 1962, pp 249-269; 279-299.  
Translations:
Related Records:
< 50 of 226 > Back
 
Powered by Scran