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Strange Maps Posts

Cartographic curiosities

1 39 44

Strange Maps

85 - Inside the Hollow Earth

Missing
about 7 years ago

If the Earth is hollow, where does all that magma spewing out of all those volcanoes come from? Somebody must have a half-convincing answer to that question, presumably that handful of people who still believe the Earth is an empty shell. The idea seems quite ludicrous now, but in pre-scientific ...

Strange Maps

83 - A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnhnms

Missing
about 7 years ago

Gulliver’s Travels (1726) is a satire of contemporary England dressed up as a faux traveller’s tale by Jonathan Swift, narrating in the first person the voyages of one Lemuel Gulliver. The book, divided in four parts, tells of Gulliver’s shipwreck on Lilliput (which is inhabited by people no ...

Strange Maps

80 - Trieste, Zones A and B

Missing
about 7 years ago

  Following World War II, the city of Trieste and its environs was administered as the Free Territory of Trieste. The area was contested between Italy and Yugoslavia. Trieste was the southern point of the newly-descended Iron Curtain, as Yugoslavia had turned communist, therefore ‘upgrading’ a ...

Strange Maps

78 - The Most Generic Country Ever

Missing
about 7 years ago

This map is from the Agile Rabbit Book of Historical and Curious Maps (Pepin Press, 2005). It’s a British map dating from 1897, explaining geographical terms by showing them in the sort of landscape they’re supposed to describe… In the process producing a map of the most generic country ever ...

Strange Maps

76 - Driving Orientation: A World Map

Missing
about 7 years ago

Another traffic map of sorts. If this world map vaguely looks like it’s highlighting a remnant of the British Empire, that’s no coincidence. This map shows which side of the road traffic drives on. Dark blue: drives on left (mainly British ex-colonies). Light blue: used to drive on right ...

Strange Maps

74 - The United States of Stellaland

Missing
about 7 years ago

Nowadays, the southern tip of Africa is dominated by a single state, the Republic of South Africa (punctuated by Lesotho, one of the world’s few enclave-states). But starting about a century and a half ago, when the usurping British were pushing the Dutch-originated Afrikaners inland, the ...

Strange Maps

73 - What the World May Come To: a Tetrahedron

Missing
about 7 years ago

Notwithstanding the fact that celestial objects of a certain mass generally are spherical in shape, an article in My Magazine, dated May 1918 (and titled What the World May Come To: The School Maps As They May Be in Millions of Years to Come) predicts that the earth is spinning itself into a ...

Strange Maps

71 - The Island of California

Missing
about 7 years ago

One of the most famous misconceptions in cartographic history is of California as an island. The origin of this error is Las Sergas de Esplandian, a romantic novel written in 1510 by Garci Rodriguez de Montalvo, stating “that on the right hand of the Indies there is an island called California ...