[LMB] [OT] Atlantic crossings

baur baur baur at chello.at
Wed Jun 23 20:30:25 BST 2021

> Elizabeth Holden <alzurite at gmail.com> hat am 23.06.2021 20:46 geschrieben:
> I thought the thing that gave the VIkings superior sailing power was not so
> much the strength of their boats (which were nonetheless superior in build)
> but the excellence of their navigation Whether this was because of the "sun
> stones" (a device acting like a compass) or simply advanced understanding
> of the ocean is unclear, at least to me.

yes, no, sort off 

the viking were - for their period - very good (coastal) navigators .. do not that the vikings did, just like the romans never voluntarily go VERY far ( a few days distance) away from a coast line 

but blue water (not coastal) navigation was - for antiquity as for the viking period and up to John Harrison basically limited to "running down the latitudes" - crossing the ocenan at constant latidues 

not only did that follow the typical blue water wind and ocean currents, it also made navigation a LOT easier, as you had at least one variable (the latitude) fixed and known - the longitude was educated guesswork until Harrison developed the nautcal chronometer

you can see that at the routes of the columbous trips .. the translatlantic parts (especially the first voyage - he got more brave later) are basically purely east-west or vice versa .. 




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