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Chorology

  • By: Barney Warf
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Chorology is the study of places or regions, usually small ones. The term chorology comes from the Greek words for “the science of place,” in contrast to chronology, the ordering of events in time. Also known as areal differentiation, chorology has a long history as a term and concept in geography.

Strabo (64 BC to AD 24), a Greek geographer working for the Romans, advocated a form of chorology in his 17-volume Geography. In contrast, Ptolemy (AD 87–150), a Roman geographer and astronomer, maintained that the task of geography is the description of the Earth as a whole; in his eight-volume Geography, Ptolemy ridiculed Strabo's emphasis on regions, arguing instead for a holistic view of the Earth. Ptolemy differentiated between geography as the study of universals, ...

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