West: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A compass rose with west highlighted
This article refers to the cardinal direction; for other uses see West (disambiguation).

West is a noun, adjective, or adverb indicating direction or geography.

West is one of the four cardinal directions or compass points. It is the opposite of east and is perpendicular to north and south.

By convention, the left side of a map is west.

To go west using a compass for navigation, set a bearing or azimuth of 270°.

West is the direction opposite that of the Earth's rotation on its axis, and is therefore the general direction towards which the Sun sets.

During the Cold War "the West" was often used to refer to the NATO camp as opposed to the Warsaw Pact and non-aligned nations. The expression survives, with an increasingly ambiguous meaning.

Moving continuously west is following a circle of latitude, which, except in the case of the equator, is not a great circle.


The English word "west" is cognate to the Old High German word westar, which may derive from an Indo-European root from which the Latin word vesper, meaning "evening", derives; as the sun sets in the west during the evening.

Symbolic meanings

In Chinese Buddhism, the West represents movement toward the Buddha or enlightenment (see Journey to the West). The ancient Aztecs believed that the West was the realm of the great goddess of water, mist, and maize. In Ancient Egypt, the West was considered to be the portal to the netherworld, and is the cardinal direction regarded in connection with death, though not always with a negative connotation. Ancient Egyptians also believed that the Goddess Amunet was a personification of the West.[1] The Celts believed that beyond the western sea off the edges of all maps lay the Otherworld, or Afterlife.

In American literature (e.g. in The Great Gatsby) moving West has sometimes symbolized gaining freedom, perhaps as an association with the settling of the Old West (see also Manifest Destiny).


  1. ^ Campbell, Joseph. The Mythic Image. Princeton University Press, 1981.


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote


  • Go West, young man, and grow up with the country.

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Regions in different countries bear the name West.


You may be looking for:

  • West - a province in Rwanda.
  • West End - a village in Grand Bahama.
  • West Flanders - a province in Belgium
  • West Java (Jawa Barat) - a province in Indonesia
  • West Nusa Tenggara (Nusa Tenggara Timur) - a province in Indonesia.
  • West Papua (Papua Barat) - Western part of Papua island, a part of Indonesia.
This article is a disambiguation page. If you arrived here by following a link from another page you can help by correcting it, so that it points to the appropriate disambiguated page.


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also west



Proper noun

Wikipedia has an article on:


the West

  1. The Western world; the regions, primarily situated in the Western Hemisphere, whose culture is derived from Europe.
  2. The Western bloc; the countries of Western Europe.
  3. (US) The Western United States in the 19th century era of terrestrial expansion; the Wild West.
  4. The western states of the United States.
  5. The western part of any region.
  6. The European Union a Western Region that is primarily an economic and political Bloc that covers 27 Member States from Western Europe to Eastern Europe

Proper noun




  1. A surname for a newcomer from the west, or someone who lived to the west of a village.

Derived terms




West (on the left side of the card)


West m.

  1. west (compass point)

This German entry was created from the translations listed at west. It may be less reliable than other entries, and may be missing parts of speech or additional senses. Please also see West in the German Wiktionary. This notice will be removed when the entry is checked. (more information) April 2008


Up to date as of January 23, 2010
(Redirected to Luther Shirley West article)

From Wikispecies

(1899- )

Author The Housefly: Its Natural History, Medical Importance, and Control.

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