The landmark is an eminently recognizable structure or feature, which has become a local or national symbol. It may be natural (such as the Golden Gate Bridge or the Statue of Liberty) or artificial, such as the Empire State Building or the Eiffel Tower. The term can also be applied to small structures or features, such as church spires and mosque’s minarets.
In the context of navigation, a landmark is a physical object or place that stands out in a sea or river and serves as a reference point for the navigator. Examples of such objects are the landmarks of many cities, including the Washington Monument and the Empire State Building in New York City; the Sydney Opera House in Sydney; or the Colosseum in Rome.
Historically, landmarks were used by explorers to navigate around long-distance obstacles such as mountain ranges or seas. These objects were often visible from miles away, and the navigator’s ability to spot them was crucial to success.
As a result, the landmark was important to early European travelers and to later explorers. It was the first land feature they saw when arriving in a new territory, and it became their point of reference for the next time they went to that region.
From the 18th century, landmarks were also used by VOC sailors as a way to mark their position on the sea. This was particularly true of ships that sailed around the southern tip of Africa.
A landmark was also a way to distinguish the ship from other vessels, for example, by using flags or other markings on the ship. In modern times, landmarks are a common form of tourist attraction.
A landmark is also a prestigious title, such as an elected official or an internationally renowned artist. For example, President George Washington is a prominent national figure and the leader of the United States. This distinction is important to him and to his country, and it also makes his name known throughout the world.