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Enquiry from Online Galleries regarding "Brass Cased Navigators Lodestone with Ring Handle"
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Incised N & S for North & South, English
Size: 9cm high, 5cm wide, 5.5cm deep – 3½ ins high, 2 ins wide, 2¼ ins deep
Iron compass needles in the 16th and 17th centuries did not retain their magnetism for very long and had often to be 'retouched' during the course of a voyage. A lodestone was therefore an essential part of a navigator's equipment until the mid 18th century when artificial magnets began to be manufactured.