author:Jinky C. Mesias
The first ever created maps were made not for economic reasons but more for religious purpose. The early maps of the world display religious icons similar to the icons that are found on the pages of the Book of Kells. During the 12th century the map of the world were created with the shaped of a T and O. And it portrays the world as circle and is divided by a T-shaped cross having Jerusalem as its center. The circle has been associated more with religious belief than with any scientific findings that the world was round. The circle more of represents the God’s affection that is perfect in every aspect. The T and O map is most commonly used by the church to represent the world unfolding according to God’s will.
One drawback of the T and O map is that it cannot be used for travel but only for religious venerations. On the advent of the 15th century although the map is still created with the T and O image however some additional drawings of real people and continents can be seen. Nevertheless, its functions remain to be the same as its 12th century counterpart.
There are also some manuscripts that have started on focusing outside the secular world and we may say have started on some features of the map as we come to know it today. There are additional features like drawings of real rivers with its corresponding names, real named places complete with geographical locations but still with religious icon drawings. This indicates the last of the 15th century map.
The additional information on the maps during the last period of the 15th century was gathered by travelers. The maps created in Europe were the only maps that may be considered as close to accurate and this was made possible through the travels of Marco Polo.
Ptolemy is a 2nd century geographer and astronomer. He was the first to create the first map that may be used to navigate the world. Ptolemy’s map was considered to be the most accurate ever created map before Christopher Columbus’ journey. But like any manuscript map, the Ptolemy’s map was not intended for navigation but more of an attempt to reproduce classical manuscripts.
The Spaniards already knew cartography and has somewhat influence the Dutch. And so when the Dutch has finally pulled away from the Spanish control they started off with their cartography and started collecting information from Holland. They have managed to print their very own map in 1570.
The creation of the map in 1570 has brought about great exploration that has changed Europe in a great extent. They no longer believed that Atlas a Greek mythological character holds the earth on his shoulders and that he plays with earth like a ball. With the creation of maps the world was no longer engulfed with mystical darkness that used to scare people into exploring the land beyond.
Plus with the creation of today’s maps which makes it even more beneficial for people who loves to travel since it does not only helps them to arrive safely in their destination it also allows them to return home. Maps also help the economic world since it allows for exchange or the trade of goods and services between nations.