Wind Rose


The Wind Rose in Sicilian artistic ceramic is made and hand painted by the master potters of Erice, the charming town perched on the mountain of the same name.

The wind rose, with its diagram representing the origin and direction of the winds, has always been a very useful tool for all sailors.

The earliest news on the Compass Rose dates back to Homeric poems: in Book V of the Odyssey, Homer lists the four main winds: Boreas, Euro, Noto and Zephyr.
La Rosa of the winds, in the classic form that we currently know, dates back to the era of the Maritime Republics and the introduction of the compass.
The graphic representation of the wind rose is made up of a circle, divided into degrees , which circumscribes a star with sixteen (sometimes 32) points, superimposed on each other like the petals of a rose; the observer is imagined in the center of the circle, while the points of the star indicate the direction of the main winds and their angular distance from the geographic north.

The simplest wind rose is the 4-pointed one made up of only four cardinal points:

  • North (N 0 °) also called north or midnight and from which the wind called tramontana
  • East (E 90 °) also called east or east and from which the wind called east
  • South (S 180 °) also called southern and from which the wind called midday or ostro
  • West (W 270 °) also called west or west and from which the wind called ponente

4 intermediate points can be set between the four main cardinal points:

  • Northeast (NE 45 °), from which the wind blows grecale (also called Greek)
  • South-East (SE 135 °), from which the wind of sirocco (wet garbino);
  • South-West (SW 225 °), from which the wind of libeccio ( garbino dry);
  • North-West (NW 315 °), from which the wind of blows mistral (carnasein).

My emotion:

Knowing the winds, and therefore recognizing and distinguishing them when they blow, has always fascinated me. I learned to recognize them also by the scents they bring in the different seasons. I also like to understand the direction of the cardinal points with respect to mine, it's a way to position yourself in the universe and feel that you are one.

This is why I have always loved every representation of the wind rose, the ones I happened to see in books or those I saw in holiday homes during a walk in Scoglitti.
Since I was a child I have lived my summers in a house by the sea, located right in front of the beach, where the winds often blow violent, as happens in this strip of Sicily overlooking the open Mediterranean. So I immediately learned that there is a big difference between the cold and violent Mistral, which we call Provence, which greases the sea, and the hot and heavy Scirocco, which instead only ripples its surface, and all this intrigued me and me. led to listen with interest to the fishermen's forecasts, who always knew how the weather would evolve and what would happen to the sea, despite the fact that weather science was in its infancy at the time.
For them the sea was source of life and sustenance, but also a terrible enemy, to be well known to be safe: there is nothing more changeable and unpredictable than the sea, which in the space of a few tens of minutes can go from a flat calm to a storm . For this reason, since the dawn of time it has been essential to know the cardinal points and winds, in order to navigate safely.