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A gyre is any manner of swirling vortex. It is often used to describe wind or ocean currents, for example the North Pacific Gyre. In bodies of water, organisms use gyres for movement from areas of depleted nutrients to areas of higher nutrients.[citation needed] Gyres are caused by the Coriolis effect.

Additional recommended knowledge

Uses in literature

Lewis Carroll uses the verb gyre in the opening stanza of the poem "Jabberwocky" that appears in the first chapter of Through the Looking Glass; in chapter 6 Humpty Dumpty defines gyre as "to go round and round like a gyroscope" (which is a valid definition, not a nonsensical one).

The word was also used by William Butler Yeats for an occult historical concept presented in his book A Vision (a book whose ideas Yeats claimed to receive from spirits of the dead). The theory of history articulated in A Vision centers on a diagram composed of two conical spirals, one situated inside the other, so that the widest part of one cone occupies the same plane as the tip of the other cone, and vice versa. Around these cones he imagined a set of spirals. Yeats claimed that this image (he called the spirals "gyres") captured contrary motions inherent within the process of history, and he divided each gyre into different regions that represented particular kinds of historical periods (and could also represent the phases of an individual's psychological development). Yeats uses the word in many of his poems, including "The Second Coming (poem)."

Gyre is also the name of a young wizard in the novel by "Patricia A. Mckillip" "In the Forests of Serre."

See also

  • North Pacific Gyre
  • Subtropical gyre
  • Weddell Gyre


    This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Gyre". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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