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Cities began to be mapped almost as soon as they appeared. We have stone city maps from ancient Babylon and many such maps on paper from an early period in China and Japan. The classical Greeks were chiefly known for their maps of the whole world. But the Romans produced remarkable stone plans of such cities as Orange and Rome itself, often setting them up in public places.

All of these ancient plans were more or less pla-nimetric, showing the city as if from directly overhead. In early modern Europe, inspired to some degree by the city plans found in some versions of the Geography of Claudius Ptolemy, town plans began to multiply, offering three main types. Particularly in Italy, plans of the classical type became ...

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