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Cartography, History of

  • By: George F. McCleary Jr. & Karen S. Cook
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Existing histories of geography and cartography in the Western world have generally focused on one or the other of these disciplines, thereby missing the significance of their interdependent development. Maps are an integral and integrating element for geography. While much of the practice of cartography operates independently of geography, work in geography has often been explicated best by maps. The exploration and mapping of the world have been widely documented, as, for example, in coffee-table books illustrated with early maps, but the developing map of the world (from Waldseemüller's map naming America in 1507 to Heezen and Tharp's depiction of the ocean floor in 1977) is only a small part of the broad picture. The focus in this entry is on the ways in which ...

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