Compass cardThe cardinal points are represented on the geographical maps by a Compass card; north is generally highlighted, for example while lengthening or in dye differently the point of the pink which indicates it. Most usually, the top of a chart indicates north, bottom the south, the line is and the left the west.
In addition to the four cardinal points, it is possible to build intermediate points (or points inter cardinals):
Cultural elementsIn the Chinese traditional cultures, of the Far East or certain cultures of Central Asia, the center - or medium - is regarded as one 5th cardinal point. With each direction is often associated a color and Toponyme S can rather refer to this color than in the name of the corresponding direction.
In America, certain cultures also include the center among the cardinal points; others count some up to seven: north, south, are, western, sky (equivalent of the zenith), ground (equivalent of the Nadir), and medium. The axis of the world (axis mundi) is the 5th cardinal point according to the chamanic cultures, it is the bond between the 2 worlds: Earth and Sky, the world of alive and the world of the spirits. It can be represented by a staircase, a succession of arrows, a scale, a tree, a snake… At the Aztec ones, Quetzalcoatl, the plumed serpent represents well the bond between the Sky and the Earth: the snake crawling on the ground, and the bird flying in the airs.
If north, currently, is generally indicated by the top of a chart, it inevitably was not thus in a systematic way. Certain old charts indicate north to the bottom of the chart; in the Christian countries, the top of the chart was directed towards the east, more exactly towards Jerusalem, which is the Holy City Christianisme. Currently, of the reversed charts is used in certain countries of the Southern hemisphere.
In the Scandinavian Mythology, north, south, is and western (nordi, sudi, osten and westen) are the four dwarves charged to support the corners of the Firmament. The marine orientation of Port side and Tribord also comes us from the Vikings.
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