Mapping paradise: a history of heaven on earth

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British Library, 2006 - Body, Mind & Spirit - 398 pages
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"In his history of the cartography of paradise, Alessandro Scafi journeys from the beginning of Christianity to the present day. Instead of dismissing the medieval belief in an earthly paradise as a picturesque legend, and the cartography of paradise as merely a medieval superstition, Scafi explores the intellectual conditions that made the mapping of paradise possible. The challenge for mapmakers, he argues, was to make visible a place that was geographically inaccessible and yet real, remote in time and yet still the scene of an essential episode in the history of salvation. As the story unfolds, each episode is illustrated by contemporary maps, many accompanied by the author's unique cartographic drawings." "Mapping Paradise also charts the transformations - in both theological doctrine and cartographical practice - that led to the decline of belief in a terrestrial paradise, and the subsequent emergence of the new historical and regional mapping of the Garden of Eden." "Mapping Paradise draws on wide-ranging historical debates about faith, reason, theology and philosophy, as well as modern spatial and cartographical thinking, to explore the notion of an earthly paradise in the Western tradition."--BOOK JACKET.

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List of Abbreviations
Changing Views on Paradise on Maps
Paradise in the Bible

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