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Interviews | September 2, 2014

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David MitchellDavid Mitchell's newest mind-bending, time-skipping novel may be his most accomplished work yet. Written in six sections, one per decade, The Bone... Continue »
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Magnificent Maps: Power, Propaganda and Art


Magnificent Maps: Power, Propaganda and Art Cover


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Publisher Comments:

Maps are often as much a visual art form as they are a practical tool for navigation. Of particular visual interest are display maps—maps that often used size and beauty to convey messages of regional and social status and power. Despite their historical significance, many of these display maps have been lost and destroyed over time. Magnificent Maps brings together the best surviving examples in order to illustrate their role in early modern Europe and describe the settings in which they were displayed.

            Most of the maps collected in Magnificent Maps date from the period 1450 to 1800, the heyday of this approach to mapping. During their time, these maps were displayed in a range of settings, from palaces to schoolrooms to bedchambers, and Peter Barber and Tom Harper here offer vivid descriptions of their original settings and examine their dual roles as propaganda and art.

Drawn from one of the greatest collections in the world at the British Library, many of these maps will be completely new even to experts. The unusual aspect of cartography presented in Magnificent Maps will appeal to collectors, historians, mapmakers and users, as well as anyone curious about the many ways we have come to illustrate and define our world.

About the Author

Peter Barber is head of map collections at the British Library. He is the author of many bestselling and critically acclaimed books on the history of maps and mapmaking, including Tales from the Map Room, Lie of the Land, and The Map Book.


Tom Harper is curator of antiquarian mapping at the British Library.

Product Details

Barber, Peter
British Library
Harper, Tom
Historical geography
Civil Engineering-Cartography
Edition Description:
Publication Date:
100 color plates
12 x 9.5 in

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » General
Business » General
Business » Management
Business » Writing
Engineering » Civil Engineering » Cartography
Engineering » Engineering » History
History and Social Science » Geography » General
History and Social Science » Geography » Mapping and Cartography
History and Social Science » World History » General
Travel » General

Magnificent Maps: Power, Propaganda and Art New Hardcover
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Product details 176 pages British Library - English 9780712350921 Reviews:
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