Some of the earliest known examples of maps in the form of Babylonian tablets are Egyptian land drawing and paintings discovered in early tombs. However, in 1961 a town plan of Catalhoyuk in turkey was unearthed painted on a wall. Featuring house and the peak of a volcano it is around 8,500 years old. The Invention of Map

The Invention of Map

The sixty-century tablet known as Imago Mundi shows Babylon on the Euphrates with cities on a circular land mass surrounded by a river. Some maps are known as Tor O maps.

The Invention of Map
The Invention of Map

In one illustrating the inhabited world in Roman times, T representing the Mediterranean dividing the continents, Asia Europe and Africa and O is the surrounding Ocean.

The T and O Hereford Mappa Mundi of 1300 drawn on a single sheet of vellum include writing in black ink and water painted green with red sea colored red.

Greek scholars developed a spherical Earth theory using astronomical observations and in 350 B.C.E. Aristotle produced arguments to justify this practice.

In the first century c.e., Ptolemy an astronomer and mathematician developed a reference line principle.

His Guide to Geography lists 8,000 location with their approximate latitudes and longitudes. However, Ptolemy underestimated the size of the Earth.

His suggestion that India could be reached by traveling westward resulted in Columbus underestimating the distance centuries later.

Cartography greatly benefited from a wealth of corrective information brought to Europe by Marco Polo in the thirteenth century.

The 1891 international Geographical Congress established the specification for a scale map of the world and World Wars I and II brought more progress.

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