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 Glossary
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 level and sight: instrument used to set a large gun to the horizontal, or to elevate and aim it on a target, see article on the gunner's sight and level. limb: the outermost part or edge of a circular or part-circular instrument carrying a scale, usually divided in degrees. longitude: angle parallel to the equator to indicate position on the earth. The celestial longitude, however, is an angular distance parallel to the ecliptic. lunar dial: dial where the shadow is cast by moonlight instead of sunlight, see article on the sundial. lunar volvelle: volvelle indicating the age of the moon, which typically converts between the time indicated by the shadow of the moon on a sundial and solar time. magic square: square grid with a number in each cell for which the sum of each row, column and diagonal is the same. magnetic compass: instrument indicating directions by a magnetic needle, see article on the compass. magnetic deviation: the angle between geographical north and the direction indicated by a compass needle. magnitudes: numbers in a scale of the relative brightnesses of the stars, 1 being the brightest. mariner's astrolabe: altitude-measuring instrument for finding latitude at sea, having a heavy brass or bronze ring, suspended by a shackle and ring, with a degree scale and a centrally-pivoted alidade. mater: part of an astrolabe, see article on the astrolabe. mathematical compendium: compound instrument for performing various functions in practical mathematics. mathematical instruments: collections of instruments of assorted kinds for performing functions in practical mathematics. measuring rod: an instrument used to measure distances or depths. See also gauging rod. measuring rods: see measuring rod. meridian: the plane containing the observer and both celestial poles, or containing the observer, the zenith and the pole, or, more colloquially, the north-south line at a particular position on the earth.
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