Monday, February 8, 2016

History of map-making

Antique maps are categorized as imaginative illustrations of their subjects: creative nonfiction and it might apply to the art of map-making.

For this reason, these pioneers of map-making felt it necessary to separate their ideas of ‘true’ map-making from maps that relied on exaggeration or imagination.

The idea of map-making was known in Egypt, where plans of particularly districts or objects as mines, houses and temples were being drawn up a early as 1400 BC.

Anaximander (611-547 BC) was the first among the Greeks to represent the details of the surface of the earth by maps. His map showed the world as a flat disc with named parts for the Mediterranean, Italy and Sicily.

The earliest periods in mapping in both the Western world and China involved understanding the earth’s shape and size. Contrary to popular belief, the essentially spherical shape of the earth and been recognized by the Greeks as early as the fourth century BC.

Claudius Ptolemy (98-168 AD), a Greek who lived and worked during the peak of the Roman Empire, is the foremost figure of map-making history.

His major contribution to map-making was a book known as Geographia, which included instructions for making map projections, for making world and sectional maps and for using latitude and longitude which also listed coordinates for about 8,000 places.
History of map-making

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