The Labyrinth Navigation System


OrientationWas there before the GPS (Global Positioning System) of our time already a LNS (Labyrinth Navigation System) in the Middle Ages?


If the "Lighting-hypothesis" of the Berlin architect and historian for buildings Klaus Kürvers is true: Yes.

Together with the Berlin photographer Jürgen Hohmuth he is working in a project documenting labyrinths on the coast of Sweden and the investigation of a hypothesis on their nautical function.

The "Torch-theory" is represented in a book of Jürgen Hohmuth: Labyrinths and Mazes, as contribution by Klaus Kürvers in the chapter The Riddle of the Troytowns.

More about the book at Labyrinth books on this website, and at www.zeitort.de ... Link >

You can read the hypothesis also in a downloadable article in English with the title Labyrinth and Seafaring at www.zeitort.de, projects > labyrinths ... Link >

Here are some topics of the hypothesis on the nautical function of the "Cretan labyrinth pattern".

The Troytowns directly situated at the coast served as nautical beacons when lighted by torches or lanterns, thus making them visible from afar.

DirectionThe labyrinths at the coasts of Sweden, Finland, and Estonia are connected with the development of Pilot Stations in the Middle Ages.




The labyrinth of SkallanäsThe labyrinths show a geographical reference to the orientation of the goal and the mouth, and the environs. By this a connection between the form and the function of the labyrinths may be explained.

Photo: The Labyrinth of Skallanäs in Sweden (to enlarge click please)

Copyright: Jürgen Hohmuth, Berlin, Oct. 2002


coming homeThe figure of the labyrinth could have served as an instrument to produce controlled nautical beacons. Through the light it is a help for orientation by showing the way and by deliverance.




The following animation tries to show the Principles and the Application:

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