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The Mapmakers' World

A Cultural History of the European World Map

Juha Nurminen Peter Barber Marjo Nurminen



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The Pool of London Press
01 July 2016
The Mapmakers' World illuminates the fascinating cultural history of European world maps: what do historical world maps tell of us, of our perception of the world, and of places and peoples that are foreign to us? Who were the makers of these early world maps? How were the maps created and for whom were they drawn and printed? For what purposes were they used? What kind of information did they pass on?

The answers to these questions open up a fascinating narrative of discovery and cartography relating not only to ideology and political power but also the histories of art and science. Rigorously researched and informed by latest academic findings, The Mapmakers' World is beautifully illustrated presenting some 300 maps from the world's finest museums, libraries and private collections. The book gives us a revealing and captivating perspective on the development of European world maps from the Early Middle Ages up until the modern period, i.e. from the 8th century until the end of the 18th century. 

The Mapmakers' World is a major work which ambitiously showcases all of the early European world map traditions: Medieval world maps (T-O maps, mappa mundis, Beatus maps, etc.)  ; Ptolemy's maps; seafarers' maps (portolan charts, planispheres and nautical charts), printed world maps and globes from the pre-Renaissance through to the Baroque era.  Furthermore, The Mapmakers' World takes its readers through the history of European global discovery and cartographic research, and also brings to life the exciting times when many of these historical maps were first discovered in the 19th century, after centuries of oblivion.

The volume includes dedicated features further exploring 100 of the most important cartographic masterpieces from the period. The book is written as an exciting, flowing narrative, rather than a catalogue or an encyclopedia, and it takes the reader on the ultimate voyage of discovery.
By:   Marjo Nurminen
Edited by:   Peter Barber
Other:   Juha Nurminen
Imprint:   The Pool of London Press
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 345mm,  Width: 255mm,  Spine: 33mm
Weight:   2.608kg
ISBN:   9781910860007
ISBN 10:   191086000X
Pages:   360
Publication Date:   01 July 2016
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Unspecified

Marjo T. Nurminen (born 1967) is an archaeologist by education and specialises in the history of science. She has worked as a TV journalist at the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE for more than ten years, focusing on science and its popularisation. Her book Tiedon Tyttaret (Sisters of Science) won the Tieto-Finlandia Award for the Best Finnish Non-Fiction Book in Finland 2008, and has been translated into a number of languages. Nurminen lives in Helsinki with her family. Peter Barber is Head of Map Collections at the British Library. His many books include The Map Book (2005) and (with Tom Harper) Magnificent Maps: Power, Propaganda and Art (British Library, 2010).

Reviews for The Mapmakers' World: A Cultural History of the European World Map

'A fine and very enjoyable read that adds considerably to the knowledge of this important aspect of maritime history. Indeed, a masterpiece!' -- Neil Baird Baird Maritime Your reviewer has to say that this is the most beautiful volume that has landed on his writing desk for a long time. ... The illustrations are superb and the book is produced to a very high quality. The deluxe big format and the large-scale full color reproductions throughout ensure a feast for the eyes; the volume is also a joy to handle. ... Though this work is outside our usual book subjects of ship models, modelling, ships and maritime history, we are sure it will appeal to many of our readers. -- Roger Marsh Ships in Scale 17/02/2016 The Mapmakers' World delivers an ambitious thesis with style. Paper and printing are superb, and the enormous number of colour illustrations make this a many-layered work that includes rarely seen portraits of leading mapmakers, exquisite enlargements of map detail and expositions on the evolution of map-making techniques. ... This magni-ficent book is a monument to the effort and ingenuity that Europeans have devoted to understanding the wider world, a quest continuing to this day, and one that still relies on maps. -- Nicholas Crane Geographical Magazine 17/02/2016

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