Mapping the World

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Simon and Schuster, 1999 - Juvenile Nonfiction - 32 pages
2 Reviews
Maps show us how to get from one place to another, but they have other stories to tell. By looking at a map, we can see which aspects of the world were most important to people in a particular time and place. The earliest maps from ancient Mesopotamia picture a small world made up only of neighboring kingdoms. During the Middle Ages, when Christianity was a powerful influence, maps often showed the location of the Garden of Eden and other places mentioned in the Bible. In a later period of trade and exploration, mapmakers produced sea charts based on compass readings to guide sailors as they navigated unknown seas. With the discovery of new lands and new peoples, the known world was transformed, and maps reveal the different stages of this great change.

Today, cartographers use computers, satellites, and other tools of modern science to map the most remote regions of the earth, create maps of the ocean floor, and even explore distant planets. This partnership between science and cartography has provided a broader perspective on our place in the universe. The world is much larger and more complicated than people of the past could ever have imagined.

Through a fascinating collection of colorful maps and an informative, engaging text, "Mapping the World" encourages readers to think about how views of the world have changed over time. After reading it, budding cartographers might even be inspired to create maps of their own.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AlbertPascal - LibraryThing

Johnson begins in ancient history with a clay tablet from Babylonia and continues on to the cartography of Ptolemy, the Mercator projection, and to today's Landsat and computer-generated maps. Her ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - kirolsen - LibraryThing

This book gives the history of all different kinds of maps and how the map we commonly use today was born. It is a very fascinating subject, I learned a lot, and I could see this being of particular ... Read full review

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About the author (1999)

Sylvia A. Johnson has had a long career as a writer of nonfiction for young people. Her books on scientific and historical subjects have received many awards. A recent title for Atheneum, Tomatoes, Potatoes, Corn, and Beans: How the Foods of the Americas Changed Eating Around the World, was chosen as a Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies and was also named a 1998 New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age. It was while doing research for that book that Ms. Johnson saw some fascinating old maps, which led her to think about the role of maps in human history and to write Mapping the World.

In addition to her career as a writer, Sylvia A. Johnson also works as a freelance editor of books and educational materials for young people. She enjoys gardening and traveling, especially to warm climates during cold winters in Minnesota, where she makes her home. Ms. Johnson lives in Minneapolis in a gray-shingled house that she shares with a gray-striped cat named Smokey.

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