antique sextant

Here is our selection of Antique sextants. The primary use of a sextant is to determine the angle between an astronomical object and the horizon for the purposes of celestial navigation. The determination of this angle, the altitude, is known as sighting (or shooting) the object, or taking a sight. The angle, and the time when it was measured, can be used to calculate a position line on a nautical or aeronautical chart. Common uses of the sextant include sighting the sun at solar noon or Polaris at night (in the Northern Hemisphere) to determine latitude. A sextant can also be used to measure the lunar distance between the moon and another celestial object (such as a star or planet) in order to determine Greenwich Mean Time and hence longitude.