In every ship a position is selected for the navigating or standard compass as free from neighbouring iron as possible, and by this compass all courses are shaped and bearings taken.
The value of these early works of the commission is shown by the fact that of 2928 vessels navigating the lower Danube in 1855, 36 were wrecked, while of 2676 in 1865 only 7 were wrecked.
The lateness of the season forced him to round Cape Horn in very stormy weather, and the navigating instruments of the time did not allow of exact observation.
To the latter he replies by asserting that, "just as the navigating steersman never looses the helm, so does God never remove his care from the world."
We are disposed to agree with the Brazilian historian Constancio that Maranon is derived from the Spanish word marana, a tangle, a snarl, which well represents the bewildering difficulties which the earlier explorers met in navigating not only the entrance to the Amazon, but the whole island-bordered, river-cut and indented coast of the now Brazilian province of Maranhao.