Airborn Setting & Symbolism

This Study Guide consists of approximately 53 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Airborn.
This section contains 762 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)


Name of one of many airships, the Aurora is headed by Captain Walken. It sails about eight hundred feet above the Pacificus and has a crow's nest that is located one hundred and fifty feet above the Control Car, suspended from Aurora's belly. The Control Car has huge wraparound windows, but set back from the bow the way that it is, the visibility high and overhead is limited. As such, there is always someone on duty in the nest. Fully provisioned, she weighs a staggering two million pounds and is nine hundred feet from end to end - and is fourteen stories in height. Once filled with hydrium, however, it takes only two men to move her out of the hanger.


Name of the ocean we know as the Pacific.

Control Car

Suspended one hundred and fifty feet below the Aurora's belly.

Lionsgate City

Destination of the Aurora when she first sights the seemingly adrift hot air balloon.

Shooting Star

Competition between Baz and Matt to see who can spot the most shooting stars in the season. So far, Matt is in the lead by twelve stars.


Star groupings that Matt's father told him stories about, including Orion, Lupus, Serpens, Draco, Hercules and others.

Skyways Law

The law established that makes it illegal to ignore another vessel in distress or adrift.

Cloud Cat

The creatures that Molloy described and that Kate is searching for. It looks like an albatross and a skeletal system similar to that of a bat.

Hydrium Gas

What the cells contain that enable air ships to go aloft, hydrium gas is lighter than helium and hydrogen. It has a smell that resembles that of mangoes.


Air ship bound for Paris.

Arctic Star

Air ship with destinations including Yellowknife, Godthab, SanktPeterburg, and Arkhangel.

Orient Express

Air ship recently arriving from Constantinople.


Five days from Lionsgate City across the Pacificus by air ship.

Ornithopter (Nimbus 638)

Often called mosquitoes because of the whine of their engines and their small size, they are ungainly in flight with feathered wings that flap on a heavier than air craft. This one buzzes around Aurora as she is leaving for Sydney, bearing two passengers who missed the lift off.

Topkapi Stateroom

The stateroom where Kate de Vries and her chaperone Marjorie Simpkins are staying, it is aptly named after a sultan's palace in Constantinople. It is also the only room on board Aurora that boasts a bathtub instead of just a shower.


Given to Matt by his father on his tenth birthday, it is inscribed with the words, "From one sailmaker to another", and he carries it with him always. It has a hinged lid and is made of brass and glass. When Matt had still been at home, he used to let it find north and then track his father based on where he was at the time. When he died three years earlier, Matt had stopped looking at it. His father couldn't be reached now.

Airship Academy

Where anyone can train to receive certification for airship positions regardless of whether or not they have ever even been up in the air.


Located at 171'43"W, 2'21"N, the island is a cone shaped, tropical island with a green lagoon behind which a crescent shaped beach lay. Beyond the beach, the island is densely forested. This is the island found by Benjamin Molloy on his last journey, where he first sighted the strange new creatures. It is the same island that the Aurora becomes shipwrecked on and strands the passengers for several days.

Mount Mataurus

One of the volcanic mountains of the Hawaiis, it erupts as the Aurora passes by.

The Very Longe Poeme Of The Venerable Mariner

A poem Matt recalls as on of many stories that told of the bad luck a mariner would face if they harmed an albatross in any way.


Large sea bird that landed nearly on the crow's nest of the Aurora, and that Matt thought was likely what Kate's grandfather saw.

Wolfram Gala

The affair at which Kate de Vries had previously met Bruce Lunardi.

Projectionists Booth

Where Matt and sometimes Baz would go when they couldn't sleep.


The movie Matt watches alone the night before they fill the ship with hydrium on the island.


The name of the ship Matt claims he and Kate had been shipwrecked from when Szpirglas discovers them on his island.


The gift that Szpirglas brings home for his son, having taken it from the Aurora's display case earlier.

This section contains 762 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Airborn from BookRags. (c)2016 BookRags, Inc. All rights reserved.
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