As many school kids know, if a magnetised needle is floated on a piece of cork it will line up with the Earth’s magnetic field.
Manuscripts dating from the 11th century indicate that it was the Chinese who first understood that by rubbing an iron bar with a lodestone (a naturally occurring magnetic mineral) it would point ‘north – south’ when allowed to rotate freely.
This discovery was enormously beneficial to early mariners who were constantly in danger of getting lost at sea. Featuring a needle on a pin over a card marked with the four cardinal points – north, south, east, and west – the ship’s compass was an important navigational tool by the 14th century.
In today’s era of GPS and other sophisticated electronic equipment, the magnetic compass remains a key feature aboard many modern ships. Simple to use, reliable and requiring no power, it’s a vital back up that could prove invaluable in an emergency.
With a design featuring elements of an ancient world map, mythical sea creatures and other nautical motifs, this spectacular antiqued silver coin evokes the olden days of maritime exploration. A unique collectable, it has a decorative metallic compass inserted in the middle, celebrating the humble instrument’s huge contribution to navigation and orientation for hundreds of years.
Meticulously crafted and hand-finished for the appearance of an ancient artefact, no more than 2,500 of these magnificent coins will be released worldwide. Accompanied by a numbered Certificate of Authenticity, each coin is housed in a presentation case and superbly illustrated shipper.
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