Thursday, 19 November 2009


Maps are used to convey information to the reader.  In spaces we use maps to educate us, give sense of direction and orientation which make us feel more safe and secure.  Without maps and direction we can get confused, even anxious and worried. On a journey it helps make sense of the place we want to get to.
Maps help us visualise, anticipate, plan and read about what to expect. It fulfils and satisfies human emotions. It helps us focus and to see the way forward.

Imagine life without maps. Always wondering where we are and what is beyond the proximity that we are familiar with. It helps to identity the place you are in and the place you want to go.
Maps let us visualise a world around us. There is more in the information in the lines of the map than the words.

Today we take maps for granted. Maps have been used for thousands of years and here we see an old simple map where ‘X’ marks the spot.

Maps were mostly advanced and developed by the Greeks. In the 6th century Hecataeus (check him out) drew the world and depicts it as an island with Greece as its’ centre.  Hecataeus was a great geographer and philosopher and was highly thought of in his time.

Though Hecataeus was well travelled I am curious how his mind worked when composing this map.

How was he thinking when he perceived the oceans surrounded the land?  Was the ocean to him as space is to us today?  Was the ocean seen as infinity to the reader at that time bearing in mind that they did not know what was beyond this?

What made him think the continents were merged in this way?

It leads me to the question that maybe his map was fanciful and although he had a great knowledge from his travels he was only imagining or perceiving what the rest of the world looked like.

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