Classical Period Maps

Graeco-Roman maps give an idea of the world that was familiar to Mediterranean people. The foray of Alexander the Great’s armies into new territories gave direct information to Europe about the East, India, and the South, into Egypt and the rest of Africa. The writings of Greek and Roman travelers add information that allowed for medieval cartographers to reproduce the early maps with some details. The reproduced maps therefore may be a reflection the interests of modern reproducers, rather than their medieval creators, and should therefore be studied with this in mind.

Arabia & Indian Ocean Goos Map – 1666 AD

Arabia & Indian Ocean Goos Map – 1666 AD

“The map of the ‘Indian Ocean’ is orientated with the north to the left. The highly decorative chart shows the East African coast, Arabia, Madagascar and the islands of the Indian Ocean with the Seychelles and the Maldives. The sea is ornated with two sailing ships, a compass rose, at the bottom a decorative title cartouche, surrounded by African natives,…

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Zheng He citation – 1763 AD

Zheng He citation – 1763 AD

“Purchased from a Shanghai dealer in 2001 by Liu Gang for a mere $500, the map shows the world—including a well-developed picture of North and South America. While text on the map indicates it was drawn in 1763, it claims to be a copy of another map drawn in 1418. The original map was cited as belonging to the great…

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