TITLE:  Etymologiarum sive Originum libri XX

DATE:  Seventh century A.D.

AUTHOR:   St. Isidore of Seville, 600 - 636 A.D.

DESCRIPTION:This seminal work was initially compiled in manuscript form on vellum, with drawings in red and black. Measuring about 25.4 x 15.2 cm, the Etymologiarum consists of 20 Books on 175 leaves, including a mappamundi, and was meant to be an encyclopedia that summed up the knowledge accumulated by early seventh century Europe.  So significant was its impact that during the following centuries it served as a model of style and composition, as well as a primary source for many medieval writers.  While the original manuscript has not survived, many copies of it have, reaching back to the eighth century.  The title of Etymologiae, or simply Origines as it is also known, refers to the fact that the author always gives the etymology of everything that he describes or defines.  Indeed, the Xth Book contains only the etymological definition of words alphabetically arranged.  Of specific interest, however, are the XIIIth and XIVth Books that deal with geographical topics and where Isidore attempts a survey of the world in a brief, definitive and educational manner.  The XIIIth Book discusses the earth as a whole - the oceans, the seas, both open and enclosed, the tides, rivers and winds - in other words, physical geography.  In the XIVth Book Isidore enumerates and briefly describes the political divisions of the world.

The author, a seventh century Bishop of Seville (Spain), leaned heavily himself on classical writers, as well as the teachings of the Church Fathers.  For the XIIIth and XIVth Books specifically, Isidore’s sources were primarily the Spanish presbyter Paulus Orosius and, secondarily, Solinus, who is quoted some 200 times, and Pomponius Mela.  However, this is not to imply that Origines is the compilation of a bestiary, or that his objects are those of the fabulist in any shape.  Rather, this work by Isidore is a “compilation of compilations” that resulted in a major reference work of the Middle Ages.

In view of the extraordinary influence of this treatise, the following excepts (the translation is taken from G. Kimble) reflects some of Isidore’s geographical concepts:

Concerning the earth we are told that it is named from its roundness (orbis) which is like a wheel; whence the small wheel is called “orbiculus”. For the Ocean flows round it on all sides and encircles its boundaries.

As to size, Isidore accepts Eratosthenes’ estimate (via Macrobius) of 252,000 stadia for the circumference of the earth.  One stadia equaled 625 feet in Isidore’s calculations, but by employing the more usual reckoning of 8 stadia to the mile and 87.5 miles to the degree, he obtained the grossly exaggerated figure of 31,500 miles for the circumference, vice 25,000 miles.  With regards to the tripartite division of the world (Europe, Africa and Asia):

The Ancients did not divide these three parts of the world equally, for Asia stretches right from the south, through the east to the north, but Europe stretches from the north to the west and thence Africa from the west to the south. From this it is quite evident that the two parts, Europe and Africa, occupy half of the world and that Asia alone occupies the other half. The former were made into two parts because the Great Sea (called the Mediterranean) enters from the Ocean between them and cuts them apart . . .

Interestingly, Isidore was the first writer to clearly define the Mediterranean by that proper name. Proceeding to a systematic description of the countries of the world, of Asia Isidore says that it is bounded in the east by Lake Maeotis [Sea of Azov] and the river Tanais [the river Don].

It contains many provinces and districts whose names and geographical situations I will briefly describe, beginning from Paradise . . . Paradise is a place lying in the eastern parts whose name is translated out of the Greek into Latin as hortus [i.e., garden]. It is called in the Hebrew tongue Eden, which is translated as Delicate [i.e., place of luxury or delight]. Uniting these two gives us Garden of Delight; for it is planted with every kind of wood and fruit-bearing tree, having also the tree of life. There is neither cold nor heat but a continual spring temperature. From the middle of the Garden a spring gushes forth to water the whole grove and, dividing up, it provides the source of four rivers [see #205C and Q]. Approach to this place was barred to man after his sin, for now it is hedged about on all sides by a sword-like flame [romphaea flamma], that is to say that it is surrounded by a wall of fire that reaches almost to the sky.

This obvious Biblical note coming so early in the topographical section of the treatise might lead the reader to expect its continuance in subsequent chapters; but apart from one or two entirely understandable references to Biblical lore - Scythia and Gothia also are said to have been named by Magog, son of Japhet and the River Ganges which sacred scripture calls Phison, flows down from Paradise to the realms of India - only the most sparing use of this source is made. By far the greatest percentage of Isidore’s material is culled from “pagan” (i.e., non-Christian) sources; indeed much of his geography might have been written by late classical writers such as Mela and Solinus. His treatment of the habitable earth enables one to arrive fairly easily at the scope of his knowledge.

In the extreme east of Asia the country of Seres is rich in fine leaves, from which are cut fleeces which the natives who decline the merchandise of other peoples sell for use as garments . . . beyond there is only the Scythian Ocean flowing from the Caspian Sea to the Eastern Sea. To the northward lies Scythia stretching from the Seric [i.e., Eastern] Ocean in the east to the Caspian Sea in the west. Several of the districts are rich in gold and precious stones but are rarely approached by man owing to the ferocity of the Griffens . . . The Griffens [or ‘Gryphes’] are so called because they are winged quadrapeds. This kind of wild beast is found in the Hyperborean Mts. In every part of their body they are lions, and in wings and head are like eagles, and they are fierce enemies of horses. Moreover they tear men to pieces. . . The land of Hyrcania, bordering Scythia to the west, has many tribes wandering far afield on account of the unfruitfulness of their lands.

Europe, in the true classical fashion, is divided from Asia by the river Tanais [today’s Don] and is bordered on the north by the Northern Ocean.  Hard by it, and forming the ne plus ultra of the known world, is the land of Barbaria, so called on account of the wild tribes inhabiting it.  Enumerated among these tribes are the Alani, the Dacians, the Goths and the Suevi.   Thule is the furthest island in the Ocean in the Northern and Western waters beyond Britain, according to Isidore, . . . having its name from the sun, because there the sun makes its summer halt, and there is no day beyond it; whence the sea is there sluggish and frozen. The western limit of the world is furnished by the Fortunate Isles, so named because they are blessed with abundance of produce; their woods yield apples naturally, their ranges of hills are clad with unplanted vines and everywhere there are crops and vegetables in place of pasture. Hence the false opinions of pagans, and the poems of secular poets, claiming that these islands were Paradise. They are situated in the Ocean off the coast of Mauretania.

Concerning Africa, Isidore says little that enables one to put bounds on it; “it begins at the boundaries of Egypt, continuing to the south through Ethiopia to Mount Atlas.” As to Ethiopia in particular, he avers that “the whole of it is under the southern pole [i.e., hemisphere]. Towards the west it is mountainous; in the middle it is sandy; to the east a desert ...  In the south it is bounded by the ocean, and in the north by the river Nile.  It contains very many tribes of different aspects, with strange forbidding countenances.”

The southeastern horizons of the world are circumscribed by the coasts of India “containing many tribes and towns”, the island of Taprobane [Sri Lanka], Chryse [Malay Pen-insula?], Argyra [Cattigara?], and “Tyle, which is never without leaves on its trees”.  Isidore states that Taprobane stretches 875 miles in length and 625 miles in width.  It is separated from India by a river that flows between them. “It is rich in pearls and precious stones; part of it is, however, infested with wild animals, but part is occupied by men.  In this island they say that there are two summers and two winters in one year and that flowers bloom twice.”

Again, for a professed theologian, Isidore shows a noteworthy breadth of general ideas, even admitting the possible existence of Antipodean lands (roughly translated):

Moreover beyond [these] three parts of the world, on the other side of the ocean, is a fourth inland part in the south, which is unknown to us because of the heat of the sun, within the bounds of which the Antipodes are fabulously said to dwell.

This concession by Isidore as expressed in the brief quote above indicated that he more than half believed in the sphericity of the earth and quite fully in the doctrine of the Antipodes.  While Isidore was not consistent in the affirmation of his adherence to the theory, this particular passage was repeated so often by his successors that it became the formula through which those of the Middle Ages who accepted the existence of the Antipodes or Antichthon expressed their belief.  As can be seen in the many examples of Isidorean maps included herein, there is only one attempt to depict this “fourth continent” graphically (#20KK).  However, the chief influence cartographically at least, in keeping the theory alive during this period was the Beatus group of maps (#207).  In this later map ‘family’ or group, there appears a statement on the strip of land located south of the Indian Ocean which is recognized as a quotation, with some curious errors, of the essential passage from the Etymologiarum just translated above.

As far as his own graphic expression of the world’s geography, one of the map designs frequently associated with Isidore of Seville is actually a survival of the ancient Greek tripartite division of the world into Asia, Africa and Europe, surrounded by the Ocean Sea.  As can be seen, this simple design by no means reflects the breadth of knowledge and ideas that can be found in the text.  Probably conceived as early as the fifth century B.C. by Ionic philosophers, this popular scheme of dividing the world into the three known major land masses is effected by using a T-shaped partition, a “T” within an “O”. Variously labeled Imago Mundi Rotunda, Noachid maps, T-in-O [Orbis Terrarum] and/or wheel-maps, this simplistic, diagrammatic plan formed the basis for one of the major design features of most subsequent “learned” medieval cartography and survived as a cartographic form long after more direct information made it difficult to accommodate such an artificial scheme.

The T within the O produced a world image divided into half (by the cross of the T) and two quarters.  The half segment (east) at the top of the map represents Asia, the lower left Europe, and the lower right Africa.  These segments also represented, according to Isidore, the divisions of the earth apportioned to the three sons of Noah: Shem, Japhet and Ham, respectively (hence the term Noachic maps).  The T separating the boundaries between the three continents also represented three of the principal waterways of the world.  The upright stem of the letter T running east and west, to the center of the world was the Mediterranean Sea. The northern (left) half of the cross bar represented the river Tanais [Don], and the southern (right) half of the cross bar represented the river Nile.

Y-O map from Bede’s De natura rerum (#205WW)

Place-names for the three continents varied considerably in the various editions and derivatives of Isidore; some maps bore the Biblical names only; others had explanatory inscriptions stating, for instance, that Asia was named after a Queen Asia, “of the posterity of Shem, and is inhabited by 27 peoples; that Africa is derived from Afer, a descendent of Abraham, and has 30 races in 360 towns”; and that Europe, named from the Europa of mythology, “is inhabited by the 15 tribes of the sons of Japhet and has 120 cities”  (#205B). Other maps give definite localities for the Twelve Tribes of Israel and the abiding places of the Twelve Apostles.

Regardless of experience and all knowledge to the contrary, the most important city regionally was located in the center of the habitable world.  In ancient Greece, Ionic philosophers placed Greece in the center of their world map and Delphi in the middle of Greece.  The Hindus had their Meru, the Persians their Kangdiz, the Arabs their Aryne [Aren, Arim, or Arin].  It was therefore inevitable that a Christian map maker like Isidore should place Jerusalem in the geographic center of the world: “This is Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are round about her” (Ezekiel V:5). The Holy City, named or illustrated, and located at the intersection of the stem and cross bar of the T, appeared most regularly especially in the center of the world maps called Sallust maps (T-O designs from about 1110 A.D., #205F, H, and O).  There it remained in the center of European world maps until about 1450 when many map makers were forced to shift the center to the east.  The discoveries of Marco Polo and other explorers made it necessary to enlarge Asia, to move Jerusalem or to ignore the discoveries.

In addition to the usual tripartite circular map of the world, some manuscripts of the Etymologiarum feature other map designs as well.  One rather similar diagrammatic design also associated with Isidore uses a square instead of a circle and a “V” instead of a “T” for partitioning the continents (#205L, #205T and #205WW).  Another map, attributed to Isidore, represents a combination of the T-O scheme and the climate-zone plan employed by writers like Macrobius (#205M).  Being one of the earliest surviving Isidorean maps it also hints at the existence of the mysterious fourth continent with the legend Temperata incognita.  Still others represent only a slight detour from the strict T-O pattern, adding the four sacred rivers, and/or more names, etc. (#205C, Q, S and W).  Two of these, #205W and 205AA, are sometimes labeled as Y-O designs.

Sallust Maps. The most closely related or influenced maps of the T-O’s are those that accompany manuscripts of Sallust’s works and may have originally been drawn to illustrate a passage from Sallust’s De bello Jugurthino which, like Isidore’s treatise, also attempted to briefly describe the countries of the world.  While the T-O format is carefully followed, the Sallust maps add the legends and pictures or vignettes that increased their aesthetic appeal.  The religious theme is predominant, Jerusalem being emphasized with the inclusion of an immense church or castle (#205F, H, and O).

T-O maps from 12th cen. Sallust MS from Zacharias’ Orbis breviarium (#205F)

From Sallustius, the Bellum Jugurthinum

14th century. Bibliotheca Marciana, Venice. Ms. Lt. Z, 432 (1656), f. 40r. (#205H)

Caius Crispus Sallustius, generally known as Sallust (86-34 BCE) was a Roman senator and historian, who subsequent to his falling out with the Caesar, was sent to Africa as a governor of Numidia (In the north-west of Africa}. He spent some time in Africa and returned home a rich man. During his mission there he was involved in various rebellions and conflicts with neighboring powers and has left accounts of his activities.

He produced his most important works on the conspiracy of Catiline and the war of Rome with Jugurtha. Both accounts appear bound in one manuscript that was copied and used as a textbook of history for almost a millennium. In his Jugurthine War Sallust writes about Africa, describing its geographic location and climatic conditions, as well as its demography where he narrates how the Armenian mercenaries settled in North Africa and intermingling with the Libyan tribes, gave rise to the peoples that inhabit the region today. An excerpt of the text is given below.

In the division of the earth, most writers consider Africa as a third part; a few admit only two divisions* Asia and Europe, and include Africa in Europe* ft is bounded, on the west* by the strait connecting our [Mediterranean] sea with the [Atlantic] ocean; on the east by a vast sloping tract which the natives call the Catabathmos. The sea is boisterous, and deficient in harbors; the soil is fertile in corn, and good for pasturage, but unproductive of trees. There is a scarcity of water both from rain and from land-springs. The natives are healthy swift of foot and able to endure fatigue. Most of them die by the gradual decay of age, except such as perish by the sword or beasts of prey, for disease finds but few victims. Animals of a venomous nature they have in great numbers, Africa, then, was originally occupied by the Getulians and Libyans, rude and uncivilized tribes, who subsisted on the flesh of wild animals, or like cattle, on the herbage of the soil. They were controlled neither by customs, laws, nor the authority of any ruler, they wandered about, without fixed habitations and slept in the abodes to which night drove them. But after Hercules, as the Africans think, perished in Spain, his army, which was composed of various nations, having lost its leader, and many candidates severalty claiming the command of it, was speedily dispersed. Of its constituent troops the Medes, Persians and Armenians having sailed over Into Africa, occupied the parts nearest to our sea.

The Medes and Armenians connected them selves with the Libyans who dwelled near the African sea, while the Getulians lay more to the sun, not far from the torrid heats; and these soon built themselves towns, as, being separated from Spain only by a strait, they proceeded to open an intercourse with its inhabitants. The name of Medes the Libyans gradually corrupted changing It in their barbarous tongue, into Moors.

Some copies of Sallusts manuscripts, which have reached us, do also include a simple T-O map, which relates to his narrative of the Jugurthine War. Many copies of this map mention the name of Armenians in North Africa, along with the names of the Medes and the Persians These were probably the forbearers of the first T-O maps, as we know them today.

As mentioned above, Sallust’s works were copied and re-copied and were in use until the late medieval period and many of the later copies of his manuscripts have reached us. Some of these include basic T-O maps, which show the continents, including the names of some countries and peoples. Since they are about the history of northern Africa, this particular area is shown in more detail. These maps are taken from various manuscript copies of Sallusts works some of them dating from as late as the 13th and the 14th centuries, when they were still in use as textbooks by historians and scholars.

Sallust mappamundi, ninth century,
University of Leipzig Library, Leipzig, Germany, MS 1607, f. 1 r, 40x53 mm

This basic T-O map is one of the oldest surviving Sallust maps. The copy dates from the ninth or tenth century and is drawn on vellum and taken from a Sallust manuscript now in the University of Leipzig in Germany. Unusual for T-O maps, it includes the vignettes of some cities and provinces. In line with all T-O maps, this one is also oriented with East at the top.

The territory of Asia includes only four legends, Tanais, Asia, Phenices and Nilus. In the area of Europe there are no legends, only the city of Roma is represented with a vignette of a castle and its name, attesting to the importance of the power of Rome in the Empire.

Since Sallust was the governor of Numidia, he has naturally paid more attention to the details of this continent. Affrica contains 24 legends, which include cities of Harran, Cartage [Cartage] plus four other cities. Various provinces are shown including rivers and names of certain tribes. The fourth line from the center bottom, near mount Athlas reads Medi - Armeni, a reference to the Armenians and Medes having settled in the area.

The map below is from a 14th century copy of a Sallust manuscript. It shows the accepted tripartite division of the circular world. In Europe only the name of the continent and two countries of Italia and Hyspania are shown. In Asia beside the name of the continent, river Nilus, Egypt and Mare Rubrum [Red Sea] are mentioned, while the tall rising tower bears the legend Jrslm [Jerusalem].

In the bodies of water dividing the world into the three continents, the Mediterranean bears no legend. The left arm of the T is inscribed Tanais, but the right arm, which should have borne the name Nilus, is only connected to the Nile at the right extremity, where the Nilus is shown as a vertical line. Near the Nile the land is described as Exusta [parched], a reference to the southern parched areas. The central part of the T bears the legends of Sidon and Sirtes (twice). The water surrounding the whole of the circular landmass is inscribed Mare Oceanum.

In Africa the picture is completely different. There are 15 toponyms and the countries of Phoenicea, Carthago, Ethiopia, Numidia and mountains of Catabatmon are shown. At the centre bottom (Western Africa) the names of the three tribes of Armani [[Armenians], Medi [Medes] and Perside [Persians] are singled out. These are the people, that according to Sallust settled in North Africa, giving rise to the North African tribes of today.

At the bottom of the map where the Mediterranean connects to the surrounding ocean, at both sides of the inlet, the corners of the mainland are separated by borderlines and the inverted legend straddling these corners reads Gades, referring to the Spanish port city of Cadiz,

Byzantine-Oxford, or B-O T-O Maps.

Another variation of the basic Isidorean design was called the Byzantine-Oxford, or B-O T-O maps.  These designs differed from the traditional divisions by showing political boundaries.   As portrayed in #205BB, the domain of Europe is extended across the Mediterranean to the southern and eastern coasts where the Crusaders made inroads.  Correspondingly, Kartago Magna [greater Carthage], an extension of Muslim North Africa, controls southern Spain. 

More prominently than in any other example of the biblical school, the Holy Land dominates the center of the map. This area is divided first into the lands of Judea, Galilee, and Palestine, and further by the names of seven of the Twelve Tribes.  The River Jordan flows southward, starting southwest of Nazareth and passing east of Jerusalem. The dividing line between Asia and Europe-Africa is replaced by Jerusalem.  The Holy City is flanked on the south by Jericho, and the site of the Crucifixion is identified just north of center.  Mt. Zion is in the exact center.

Inscriptions confirm the idea that the map was composed in the Byzantine world.  The directions of the compass are given in Greek as well as Latin.  Several notes identify the regions in which various Disciples preached. Paul is located at Athens, John in Ephesus, Peter in Caesarea, and Andrew in Achaia.  In Ephesus, the Byzantine emperor Justinian (482-565) built a temple to St. John the Divine, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.  At Caesarea Philippi, Peter received his commission and the “keys” of the Church. Achaia is the Roman and Byzantine name for the Greek province where Andrew is said to have preached.

The map was brought back to England or Ireland after the First Crusade, which conquered Jerusalem in 1099.  The copyist or a later hand has added Britannia, Hibernia, and the northern island Thule in the margin, but the remainder is apparently a faithful Latin version, dating from 1110, of the Greek original.  Above all, the map applies the Crusaders’ guiding doctrinal notion of Jerusalem as the most important place on earth.

Christian scholars adopted the T-O map for its simplicity, as had the classical writers who first employed it. The Byzantine-Oxford T-O map treats this expedient diagram as an emblem of conquest. Jerusalem was the focus of that Conquest for more than two centuries of Crusaders, and it would remain the center of attention on maps until the invention of printing and the publication of Ptolemy in the 1470s.

These T-O maps, whether actually contained in the Etymologiarum of Isidore, in later editions of the same, as modified derivatives thereof (Sallusts, B-O T-O), or as maps that were merely influenced by the basic design format (Hereford, Ebstorf, et. al.), were all very popular and numerous during the Middle Ages in Europe.  This can be evidenced by the relatively large survival rate.  At least eighty manuscripts, reaching from the 8th beginning with the Albi map (#206), to the 15th century with the first printed map being a T-O map, contain designs developed on the T-O pattern with surprisingly similar characteristics.  In fact, so influential and popular was Isidore’s treatise that it continued to be read right into the Renaissance period.  Isidore is quoted time and time again by such 15th century writers as Pierre d’Ailly and even Christopher Columbus (Book III, #238).  In 1472 the Origines was printed in an edition published by Gunther Zainer who displayed Isidore’s tripartite world-picture traditionally just as it had been handed down in the manuscripts; this being so even though more accurate geographical knowledge was obviously available at this time.  Measuring just 2.5 inches in diameter, this little woodcut diagram map has the added distinction of being the first known map printed in Europe.

Byzantine-Oxford T-O map, 1110, 17 cm diameter #205BB

In the Abbey of Thorney, England, ‘Computus’. One of the most interesting features of this map is its highly abstract form: it is mostly comprised of straight lines with only a few concessions to irregular geographical forms. See, for example, mons Ethna and the islands of Thule, Hibernia and Britannia. Its heavily biblical content is also unusual: note Hierusalem on the central axis with the cross and Mt. Syon in the center. Place names are almost entirely omitted from Africa and Asia Major, and a note in the upper right adds “[Asia] Major has in the east Alexandria and Pamphilia”. (Courtesy of St John’s College, Oxford; MS 17, f.6.) 

At the Benedictine monastery of Thorney in East Anglia, a large and elegant computus book was finished in 1110, designed to be an ornament of the newly completed church. The core text are the three works of Bede: De natura rerum, De temporibus and De temporum ratione; Helperic’s De computo from about the year 900, and tracts by Dionysius Exiguus with the Paschal tables. The whole is illustrated by instructive diagrams, including five world maps: two T-O centers of rotae, two zonal maps, and one larger, more detailed map. The detailed world map has no introductory or accompanying text and no title. The page is composed with the map above and a week-day table arranged under the arches below. It looks like nothing so much as a cathedral rose window with a row of lancets beneath. In this manuscript the artistry of layout seems almost to have subsumed meaning. Around the circle of the map the cardinal directions are ostentatiously given in Greek and glossed in Latin: for example, Anathole vel oriens vel eoi, in the east. A note to one side says, Maior habet in oriente alexandriam pamphiliam, a reference to Asia Major at the top of the map. The whole is laid out with impressive regularity. It looks like a T-O map, but the continents are not in their usual places and the center bar, usually occupied by the Nile/Black Sea axis, is labeled Hierusalem in large letters with a cross in the center and an explanatory note crux xpi or cross of Christ. Below the cross is Mons Syon. The vertical bar of the “T”, usually the Mediterranean, is also unlabeled. In fact, the only bodies of water to be named on this map are the rivers Jordan, Euphrates and Tiber.

The continents are arranged with Asia at the top, Europe apparently in the center and Africa in the southwest corner. Most puzzling is that the label for Europe crosses what would normally be the Mediterranean. Another oddity is that Achaia, where St Andrew [preached] is in Southeast Asia, far from Athens, the preaching site of Paul. Of the sons of Noah, Shem is found in Asia and Ham in Africa, as usual, but Japheth stands next to Shem in Asia, instead of Europe. This placement could reflect the scribe's loyalty to the Biblical text, May God make space for Japhet, and let him live in the tents of Shem (Genesis 9.7)

The numbers of people in the world are announced as seventy-two (Quod sunt septuaginta due gentes orte) but the total adds up to ninety: Shem, twenty-seven; Ham, thirty; and Armenia, thirty-three. The peoples descending from Japheth are not named. These are the usual numbers for the descendants of Shem and Ham, but the source of the numbers for Armenia and why this country is singled out are not clear.

The map is dedicated almost entirely to places of significance in the Bible. The division of the earth among the sons of Noah, Noah’s ark, seven of the twelve tribal territories of the land of Israel, Jericho and the city of refuge (Joshua 20) for those guilty of involuntary manslaughter under Hebrew law, all come from Jewish history. Paradise is not shown. The life of Christ is illustrated by the river Jordan, Galilee, Nazareth and Jerusalem. Athens, Ephesus, Achaia, and Caesarea are mentioned specifically as sites where the apostles preached. The only places without a biblical link of some kind are in Italy (Sicily, Mount Etna, Tuscany, Campania), Constantinople and Britain, Ireland and Thule. These islands, the only ones represented, break the frame of the map, perhaps as a burst of patriotism on the part of the scribes. They are in the north, but so far east as to be immediately above Constantinople. Kartago Magna, which could be Cartagena in Spain as Cartago appears elsewhere on the map, is another non-biblical site.

Description of the Byzantine-Oxford T-O mappamundi. (The following is from Faith Wallis, “2. Computus Related Materials: 16. Mappamundi,” The Calendar & the Cloister: Oxford, St. John’s College MS 17 (McGill University Library. Digital Collections Program, 2007).

Like the map within the rota of sunrises and sunsets, this is a T-O map with Asia in the top half, and Europe and Africa in the lower half. These divisions are treated rather casually, however, for the label EVROPA straddles the boundary between Europe and Africa; locations in the Holy Land are indifferently assigned to Asia and Africa, and Athens and Achaia are placed in Asia. There is no attempt at cartographic realism: this is a diagram containing a list of places.

A. Asia is divided by horizontal lines into three zones: 1. ASIA MAIOR: glossed QVOD SVNT SEPTVAGINTA DVE GENTES ORTE, and beneath this De Sem gentes XXVI. De iafeth <gentes XV (see AFFRICA below for Ham). At the right hand edge Achaia ubi santus andreas <predicauit>.

2. Asia minor: containing roughly from left to right constantinopolis, Effesus <ubi> sanctus iohannes predicauit, cilicia, cesaria hic petrus predicauit, Armenia gentes XXXIII, Archa noe, Eufrates flumen, Mesopotamia, BABILONIA, Caldea. Outside the map in the left margin is a note: <Asia> Maior habet in oriente alexandriam pamphiliam.

3. A zone largely comprising sites in the Holy Land: Athenas. hic paulus predicauit, Nazareth, Aser, Dan, Effraim, Iordanis flumen, Neptalim, Zebulon, Manases, Isachar, galilea, Ciuitas refugii, Iericho.

B. Running horizontally across the middle of the map, and dividing Asia from Africa and Europe, is a band labeled HIERVSALEM. Between the E and R of HIERVSALEM is a cross, labeled above the E crux christi. In the centre, at the juncture of the horizontal and vertical dividing bands, is an omega-shape with a cross in the centre, labeled beneath Mons syon.

C. Europe in principle occupies the left hand side of the lower half of the map, but the label EVROPA actually straddles the vertical divider. In the Europe zone, reading from top to bottom and left to right are: Terra macedonum, Campania, Italia, ROMA, tiberis flumen, Tuscia, mons Ethna, sicilia, KARTAGO MAGNA.

D. Africa is labeled much more discretely at the foot of the Africa zone (Affrica). Above it is the statement corresponding to the one in the Asia zone: De cham gentes XXX. The only place names in the Africa zone are at the very top, and two of them, TERRA IVDA, and PALESTINA, may have been intended as part of the central band (B above). Only the final place name, CARTAGO, actually refers to an African location.

E. Great Britain, Ireland and Thule are represented at or over the edge of the orbis and in the northern rather than western quadrant. Britain is barely within the frame, and the other islands float outside.

In form, content and function, MS 17’s map represents a recent development in medieval cartography. Patrick Gautier Dalché has argued that the 12th century witnessed a transformation of mappaemundi from visual glosses appended to parent texts, into autonomous graphic documents, some of which generated their own explanatory materials. These independent maps tend to occupy the full width of the page, or the page in its entirety. They absorbed significant amounts of text into the schematic frame, such as lists of the provinces of the inhabited world. MS 17 is a rather exceptional graphic gazetteer constructed of three overlapping lists, each with a distinctive tradition: a list of provinces of the inhabited world (ultimately derived from the schematic map accompanying Sallust’s Bellum Iugurthinum); a list of the nations of the earth descended from the three sons of Noah (cf. Augustine, De doctrina christiana 16.6; Isidore of Seville, Chronicon); and a list of places associated with Biblical and apostolic history (cf. Isidore of Seville, De ortu et obitu patrum 71.151). In form, MS 17’s map takes it cue from the first of these three components. It is very close to such contemporary elaborations of the Sallust map as Vatican City, BAV Reg. lat. 571, fol. 71v (s. XI/XII), or the Arnstein Bible map in British Library Harley 2799, fol. 241v (s. XII): the latter is of exceptional interest in that the map shares the page with a schema of the divisions of philosophy not dissimilar to the one on fol. 7r of MS 17. The interpolated Biblical references include the ark of Noah in Armenia, and cities such as Athens and Caesarea that are explicitly connected with the missionary activity of the apostles. Locations in the Holy Land, include tribal territories, places associated with the life of Christ (Nazareth, the Jordan river), Jericho and the “cities of refuge.”

Other elements of MS 17’s map have also been singled out as innovative. The prominence given to Jerusalem, together with the double representation of the Cross (once on its own, and once on Mount Zion), is a case in point. Anna-Dorothea von den Brincken claims that this map is the first to position Jerusalem in the centre of the world, and not at its eastern extremity. She associates this with the piety of the First Crusade, and the attention given to the Cross would support this claim. MS 17 was made in 1110, barely fifteen years after the First Crusade. A map contemporary with MS 17’s -- Saint-Omer Bibliothèque municipale 97 fol. 1r -- also situates Jerusalem in the center. Like MS 17’s image, it gives considerable prominence to the circumambient ocean, as well as to the islands of Britain, Ireland and Thule: its creator seems to have been especially concerned to situate his own region with respect to the extremes of the world, both to the east and to the west. This is a preoccupation of the First Crusade era, and its apocalyptic resonances are particularly noticeable in the world maps of Lambert of Saint-Omer’s Liber Floridus (1112/1115-1121 #217). England’s geographic position may have made it especially sensitive to this apocalyptic dimension: the second of two notes on chronology in Oxford Bodleian Library Auct. F.5.19, fol. 82v, a manuscript contemporary with MS 17, adopts a four-ages scheme somewhat like that found in the dating clause on fol. 3v, but the fourth age, instead of ending in the annus praesens, runs from the Incarnation ad iter ierusalem, as if this event closed the series of years and ushered in the end times.

On the other hand, this mappamundi is also closely connected in content and context to Byrhtferth’s Diagram on fol. 7v. A mappamundi with identical arrangement and legends appears in the Peterborough Computus (Harley 3667 fol. 8v), a manuscript very closely related to MS 17 in space and time; and the Peterborough computus also contains the only other extant copy of Byrhtferth’s Diagram (#205Z13). The only significant difference between the Peterborough version of the map and the one found in MS 17 is that MS 17 alone contains the marginal note on Asia maior. However, the Peterborough map does not represent Mount Sion as a round “hill” with a cross, but as a triangle, and spells IERUSALEM without MS 17’s initial H. It also omits the note concerning the nations descended from Japeth. It should also be noted that a second, incomplete copy of this map is found in Cambridge, Corpus Christi College 265, p. 210, the “Commonplace Book” of Archbishop Wulfstan II of Worcester. The manuscript is dated to the last quarter of the 11th century, and this addition to the second half of the 12th century but the hand of the map bears an extraordinarily close resemblance to that of Scribe A of MS 17, and the palaeographical indicators point to a date closer to 1100. The frame of the map, a double circle, was drawn in drypoint, and at the right and left upper corners of the page are two smaller drypoint circles. The inscriptions are: ASIA MINOR within an oval frame; Quod sunt septuagina due \os orte/ gent<es>; DE SEM GENTES XXVII; ACHAIA sanctus andreas; cili<cia>; cesaria hic petrus predicauit; and the bow representing the Ark of Noah.

The content of the map also finds parallels in Byrhtferth’s Diagram. The map is oriented, and the four cardinal directions are labeled in Greek, with Latin glosses: ANATHOLE ID EST ORIENS VEL EOI [i.e.]. Mesembrios id est meridies uel auster. Disis id est occidens uel occasus. Arcton id est septentrio. When these Greek names for the cardinal directions are read as if making the sign of the cross, that is, east-west-north-south, their initial letters spell ADAM. The popularity of this ancient conceit was primarily due to St Augustine, who compared Adam’s progeny filling the earth and the sons of Noah re-populating the globe. It appears in Bede’s commentary on Genesis, and is prominently featured in Byrhtferth’s Diagram. Insular writers were particularly attracted to this theme, because they associated the conversion of their lands, at the very edge of the known world, with the fulfillment of Christ’s command to take to Gospel to the ends of the earth. This fulfillment would be the climax of history, and would usher in the last days; hence the world-maps included in the Apocalypse commentary of Beatus of Liebana were essentially maps illustrating the preaching of the apostles to the gentes descended from Noah’s three sons, but expanded to encompass the whole world and the entirety of the world-age (#207). Indeed, mappaemundi have a pronounced historical dimension: they are found in association with chronicles more frequently than in scientific works, and as illustrations of sacred history, they were infused with an allegorical vision of time. Hence this world map is a logical addition to a manuscript devoted to the reckoning of time.

But there is also a particularly insular connection between computus and universal geography, one that is connected to the debates over the correct system of calculating Easter that marked the early years of Christianity in England. In his account of the Synod of Whitby, Bede reports that Wilfred invoked Rome as the center of the world, the place where Peter and Paul taught, were martyred and buried, and listed the various Christian lands which follow the orthodox reckoning: Italy, Gaul, Africa, Asia, Egypt, Greece... The British Isles and Ireland were little corners of the outer margins of the orbis terrarum, which further served to marginalize the deviant computus of the island churches. Moreover, in Book 5 of the Historia ecclesiastica, Bede follows up his account of Adomnan of Iona’s reception of the Roman Easter with a paraphrase of his De locis sanctis: now it is Jerusalem, not Rome, which is the center of the world, but the link between computistical orthodoxy and the universality of the Church in space is still the underlying message.

In sum, this map presents a perplexing double aspect. Its overall form corresponds to that of the new style of self-standing, text-intensive maps which Gautier Dalché assigns to the 12th century, and its emphasis on Jerusalem and the cross links it to Crusader cartography. But the ADAM device, to say nothing of its proximity to Byrhtferth’s Diagram both in MS 17 and in the Peterborough computus, argue forcefully for its derivation from Byrhtferth or his milieu.

Schematic maps of the oikumene of the T-O type are often embedded in computus diagrams as a shorthand representation of the earth; zone maps illustrating the climates of the earth, derived from Macrobius’ Commentum in Somnium Scipionis (#201), appear in anthologies of cosmographic materials as illustrations of passages from Isidore (cf. fol. 40r) or Bede (cf. gloss 70 to De temporum ratione). A map of the Macrobian type also appears in the Abbonian computus manuscript Berlin 138 fol. 39v. A list map using the T-O form as a symbolic frame for displaying the names of provinces in Asia, Africa and Europe appears in Cotton Vitellius A.XII, fol. 64r; a note about Noah and his sons on the verso of fol. 64, underscores the magnetic attraction of these two ways of listing the inhabitants of the world, and how innovative MS 17 was in fusing them.

Gautier Dalché sees maps like the one in MS 17 as autonomous addenda to computus manuscripts, but offers no explanation why they should be included at all. Evelyn Edson, on the other hand, argues that MS 17’s mappamundi is one of a small group of complex maps directly inspired by computus themes. In this category she includes oikumene maps, often quite large, such as the one in Vatican City BAV 6018 fols. 63v-64r, (s. VIII or IX in). Of the two maps in Cotton Tiberius B.V. 1., the first is a modified Macrobian climate-zone map, very like Abbo’s (fol. 29r) in which only the northern temperate zone -- the oikumene or inhabited world -- is treated like a map, while the remainder of the disk is occupied solely by text. The second Tiberius mappamundi (fol. 58v) is a very detailed and realistic map of the oikumene, labeled by the scribe as an illustration of Priscian’s Periegesis (the text which follows), but incorporating Biblical place names not in Priscian: the tribes of Israel, Noah’s ark, the lands of Israel’s enemies the Philistines, Moabites etc., Galilee, Bethlehem and Jerusalem. MS 17’s mappamundi is by comparison distinctly abstract and textual. Edson tentatively suggests a comparison to the maps of the Holy Land created by the Talmudic scholar Rashi to expound the sacred text; however, MS 17’s map does not illustrate a text. Like Byrhtferth’s Diagram, it is a self-contained graphic presentation of complex religious and cosmological themes: in Edson’s words, it is “a spiritual diagram of the earth.” Gautier Dalché also underscores the contemplative and visionary dimensions of cartography’s “God’s eye view” of the world and time, particularly in maps like those of MS 17, so richly adorned with references. In this respect, MS 17’s map is an integral part of a monastic encyclopedia, in which the study of the world and time is itself a serious discipline.

T-O Noahic map from Jean Mansel’s La fleur des histiores, Lambert of St Omer, 30x22cm, 15th century showing the three continents settled by the three sons of Noah – Shem, Ham and Japhet (#205K2)

In about 1446-1451 Jean Mansel composed a universal history titled La fleur des histoires, and then in the 1460s wrote a longer version of the same work. A famous and often reproduced world map in a manuscript of the short version of Mansel’s book, which was probably made by Simom Marmion in about 1460, illustrates the division of the world among the three sons of Noah. Another world map in a manuscript of the long version of the book, this one created c.1480, for this map contains large and prominent sea monsters in the circumfluent ocean. The map (shown below) is in a chapter on the “Provinces du monde,” but there is almost no connection between the map and the list of provinces in the chapter. Adam, Eve, and the serpent are in Eden at the top (east) of the map, with the rivers of Paradise flowing downward from it to the west (the river Jordan is labeled). Jerusalem stands out at the center of the world and is labeled, as are Calvary, Babylon, the Red Sea, and Rome; the Trees of the Sun and Moon visited by Alexander the Great are also easy to identify. But otherwise the map’s geography is vague; it presents much of the earth as a “jumble” of land and water. The map has a strange wall-like division between the ecumene and the circumfluent ocean.

The map is placed at the start of the prologue to Book IV, in which a description of the regions of the world is given in alphabetical order. Mansel’s description includes ancient places such as Carthage and Delos, biblical places such as Babylon and Judaea, and lands of contemporary importance such as Westphalia and Gascony. His aim was to show how Rome developed from a small town to a global empire, almost every corner of which had been penetrated by Christianity before the empire passed to the Franks. The map is circular. Heads symbolizing the four principal winds surround the habitable world, on which a number of historical or encyclopedic features are portrayed, such as the Tower of Babel, the Trees of the Sun and the Moon, the river Jordan, Jerusalem with Mount Calvary, the Red Sea, Rome, and some of the monstrous races. At the apex of the circular terrestrial landmass, in the distant east, is Paradise. Adam and Eve, the tree and the serpent are shown within an ornate architectural frame, as if to emphasize the uniqueness and splendor of the Garden. From Paradise the four rivers flow out to give life to the earth and to establish a mysterious yet material connection between paradise and the human realm. In his book, Mansel described Paradise as a wonderful region surpassing all other earthly lands, fit for man’s initial perfection, surrounded by a wall of fire and situated on an exceptionally high mountain that reached the sphere of the moon.

There are six sea monsters in the ocean, and each is labeled. Beginning from the west and proceeding clockwise; these are: (1) the head of a sea serpent protruding from the water, with a long tongue, labeled serpentes; (2) a sea serpent with a human head and horns, whose whole body is visible, labeled pagassus; (3) a sea monster that looks like an embryo, but which is probably intended to be a seal or similar animal, labeled luphanes; (4) a fish with a large toothy mouth labeled pisses (for pisces); (5) a winged dragon with the legend hic sunt dragones; and (6) the forequarters of a sea monster with a horned head, gaping mouth, and two forelegs, labeled gorgato. The pisses and serpentes require no explanation. The legend hic sunt dragones, “Here there are dragons”, sounds like a legend that would appear on many medieval maps—such is our tendency to associate monsters with medieval maps—but in fact it appears on only one other cartographic object, namely the Hunt-Lenox globe of c.1510 (Book IV, #314), where on the southeastern coast of Asia there is a legend that reads HC SVNT DRACONES.

The name gorgato recalls the medieval Latin gargata and Old French gargate, meaning “throat,” perhaps alluding to the creature’s voracious nature, but these monsters seem to have been invented by the cartographer. Of course that is the easy conclusion, but it is rendered very plausible if we look at the names of some of the islands in the circumfluent ocean—golgavatas terra, lapides presiosa (for lapides pretiosi, “precious stones”), habundans terra, illa deserta, tamaria, alphaua terra, and illa arcana, for example—which are quite clearly invented. In fact none of the islands in the circumfluent ocean which are discussed by Mansel—Grande-Bretagne, iles Fortunees, Gales, Irlande, Orcades, Escosse, Thanatos, Taprobane, Thule, and Islande—appears on this map. The prominent sea monsters on the map are thus invented dangers, rather than being based on the descriptions of sea monsters in a bestiary or encyclopedia, and the labels, like those on the islands, are attempts to convey an authority and accuracy which in fact are absent. These monsters, though invented, nonetheless have their effect, and render the circumfluent ocean a place of terrors, in contrast to the apparently peaceful buildings of the inhabited world. As this manuscript is the only one of the long version of the work that contains a world map, it seems likely that the map was the result of a specific request by the patron commissioning the manuscript, namely Philippe II Sans Terre (1438-1497). But once he had been assigned this task, the artist seems to have given his fancy free rein.

World map, from Jean Mansel, La Fleur des histoires. France, c.1460-70. 38 X 28 cm. Brussels, Bibliotheque Royale de Belgique/Koninklijke Bibliotheek van Belgie, MS 9260, fol. 11r.

The east-orientated map features the inhabited earth crowned by the earthly paradise. It immediately precedes the prologue to Book IV, which includes a regional description of the world in alphabetical order. Within each letter, though, places are not described in strict alphabetical order. Under the letter ‘A’, for example, we read first about Asia and Assyria, then Arabia, Armenia and Albania. Paradise is listed before Parthia, Pamphilia and Pannonia. The text also retains Isidore’s distinction between the Fortunate Islands and the earthly paradise and repeats the belief that Enoch and Elijah dwelt in the Garden and that the noise of the waters of Paradise falling to earth from a such a great height caused the local population to be born deaf.

Gunter Zainer’s 1472
T-O map, the first printed map in Europe (#205).

The T-O map tradition did not die out as a cartographic form of expression until as late as the 17th century, as may be seen from a book such as the Variae Orbis Universi, by Petrus Bertius, 1628.

The T-O maps received their classical explanation in a 15th century poem by the Italian historian, Leonardo Dati (1365 - 1424), in his La Sfera (c.1420)

                                          Un T denttro adun O monstra ildisegno

                                          chome inttre partti fu diviso ilmondo

                                          elasuperiore emagor rengno

                                          chequasi pigla lameta delmondo

                                           asia chiamatta elgrenbo ritto segno

                                           chepartte iltterzo nome dalsechondo

                                           africho dicho daleuropia elm

                                           are mediteraneo traese imezzo apare.

[A T in an O gives us the division of the world into three parts.

   The upper part and the greatest empire take nearly the half of the world.

It is Asia; the vertical bar is the limit dividing the third from the second, Africa,

I say, from Europe; between them appear the Mediterranean Sea. ]

A Medieval Armenian T-O Map

By Rouben Galichian

The Matenadaran archive collection in Yerevan, capital of Armenia, contains some 14,000 manuscripts from the golden age of Armenian literature, beginning in the 5th century, and from later periods. Among these manuscripts are many illustrated works on astrology and astronomy as well as some on geography, but virtually nothing contains a map. The oldest geographical work originates from as early as the fifth century and is titled in Armenian Ashkharhatzuytz or Mirror of the World. One full and almost sixty abridged manuscript copies of this work have survived, thirty-three of which are in the Matenadaran. The original Ashkharhatzuytz is attributed by some to the 5th century Armenian historian Movses Khorenatzi, while others believe that it is the work of the 7th century scientist and astronomer Anania Shirakatzi. The text is based on the work of Pappus of Alexandria (late third or early 4th century AD), but the chapters relating to Armenia and neighboring countries have been expanded. A later version of the Ashkharhatzuytz by the 13th century historian and geographer Vartan Areveltzi is also extant in multiple copies (MS 3119, 4184 and others). Both the earlier and the later versions display the influence of Ptolemy, and as in the case of Ptolemy, no maps accompany these manuscripts.

One exception to the general lack of maps in the Yerevan archives is MS 1242, a collection of eighteen unrelated essays on religious, moral, mathematical and astronomical subjects dating mainly from the 13th to the 15th centuries. The manuscript is in various hands and has been written on paper. There are 205 numbered leaves, each measuring about 16.5 x 12.5 cm. Folio 131v contains a table of angles of the elevation of the solar orbit. The facing page, folio 132r, bears the circular world map. On the verso of the map page (fol. 132v) is the beginning of an article on mathematical riddles. The map has no obvious relation to anything else in the volume. This map is believed to be the oldest Armenian language map in existence. Its presence in the manuscript raises questions about how such an essentially non-Armenian-style map came to be made by an Armenian, and when, considering that this is the only T-O type map bearing Armenian inscriptions known to exist.

The map on folio 132r can be described as of the T - O type, but its construction has been modified. The two circles, drawn in red, that form the O measure 12.5 cm and 11.3 cm in diameter respectively, with the size of the larger circle being dictated by the width of the page. The horizontal arms of the letter T (stretching north and south from Jerusalem at the centre) are not represented by the rivers Tanais (Don) and Nile, as in conventional T-O maps, but by single red lines ruled, it would seem, to demarcate Asia from Europe and from Africa. Only the northern end of the single red line might be considered to represent the river Tanais, the traditional divide between Europe and Asia. Two vertical parallel red lines (running from Jerusalem to the western edge of the map) represent the unnamed Mediterranean Sea that separates Africa and Europe. In accordance with the Western Christian T-O maps, the Armenian map is oriented with East at the top.

Yerevan, Matenadaran, MS 1242, fol. 132r.
(Reproduced with the kind permission of the Director of the Matenadaran.)

Also as in many maps of the T-O genre, the centre is occupied by the Holy City of Jerusalem, which is shown with its six gates, each inscribed with its name in Armenian. The circular legend around the city reads The city of Jerusalem populated in ancient and recent times by the Israelites [the Armenian phrase reads Bnakui hin yev nor avrinatz qaghaq I[sra] letzotz vor e Yerusaghem]. The considerable prominence given to Jerusalem can be explained by the fact that the Armenian Church had, and still has, close ties with the Holy City and is one of the four custodians of the Holy Places, with a church, seminary and religious order active since the 5th century. It may be worth bearing in mind that for the first four centuries of Christianity it was predominantly an Asiatic and North African religion, and that the Christian world was not divided into a Latin West and a predominantly Byzantine East until after the Council of Ephesus in 431. Christianity had reached Armenia through the preaching of the Apostles Bartholomew and Thaddeus. It became the state religion in 301, after the conversion of King Tigran III, which makes the Armenian Church one of the oldest Christian entities. Armenian Christianity's ties with the Latin churches were severed in 554 over irreconcilable doctrinal differences.

In both shape and arrangement, the city sign is akin to that on the Hereford mapparnundi, c.1290 (#226), although it lacks the enclosing crenulated walls of the Hereford map sign. It also resembles the plan of Jerusalem in another Armenian manuscript in the Matenadaran, the much later MS 1770 which dates from 1589. It contains a collection of religious, geographical, astronomical and historical works. In Section 11, containing a text related to the Old Testament, there is circular plan of the city of Jerusalem (fol. 392r), which is similar to the plan of the same city drawn in the centre of the world map of MS 1242. Although made in geographically widely separate locations, a common source or tradition may be suspected, especially were the Armenian map to prove to have been made before the end of the 13th century, which would place all these maps to within one hundred to one hundred fifty years of each other. The city plan in the 16th century MS 1770 also would seem to have been derived from the same common source or tradition.

As shown in the following Table, in addition to Jerusalem, twenty-seven place- names are found on the map. A number of descriptive legends are inscribed outside and inside the map proper. Outside the double-circle frame of the map are the names of the four cardinal directions Hyusis, Harav, Arevelq and Arevmutq, and the word Dzov [Sea] is written seven times. Because the encircling Ocean touches two sides of paper, the words Hyusis [North] and Harav [South] have had to be split. The significance of the two circles is made clear by the note, also on the outside, The all encompassing ocean, which is in this shape. The term Sea, it should be noted, as used on the Armenian T-O map, refers any substantial body of water, whether it be an ocean, sea, lake or river. Similarly the term Land does not denote a territory as such, but is placed wherever there is a significant gap between neighboring toponyms.

The least ambiguous continental division on the Armenian map is between Africa and Europe. This is shown by the pair of vertical red lines that descend from Jerusalem in the center to the outer Ocean and represent the Mediterranean, which is identified only by the word Sea. The Mediterranean contains four circular islands represented by small black circles. One circle, well to the north of the parallel lines is labeled Kipros [Cyprus]. The other three are unnamed. One of these is located at the eastern extremity of the Mediterranean Sea, within the parallel lines, whereas the other two lie just to the north of the lines.

The inscription to the left of the stem of the T, below the triangle formed by three dots, reads, Ays koghms Eropa [This side is Europe]. Around the periphery are the names of three nations, those of the Bulgharq [Bulgars], Alamanq [Germans] and Franks [Franks], and one country, Spania [Spain]. Further in from the Ocean two cities are named, Kostandnupolis [Constantinople] and Venejia [Venice]. The choice of these two cities within Europe is unlikely to have been accidental. Venice was an important entrepot for Armenian merchants, and Constantinople, capital of the Byzantine Empire, was the most important religious and political centre outside Jerusalem.

English translation of the toponyms and legends, overlaid on the medieval Armenian T-O map

Table 1. Place-Names Found on the Armenian T-O Map

In Asia:                                                           In Europe:                    In Africa:

Rasq Russi    Kansaih Khansai

                                                            Balgharq Bulgars            Misr-Yegiptos Egypt

Khaytai China  Zaytun Zaytun

                                                        Alamanq Germans        Skandaria Alexandria

Ashkharq Hndkatz Lands of the Indians

Merdin Mardin Baghdat Baghdad

                                                            Franks Franks            [Karmir] Dzoy Red Sea

                                                    Spania Spain            Hapash Ethiopia

Hndkastan India Dmshkh Damascus

                                                Kostandnapolis Constantinople     Tuman Tuman (lake)

Kafa  Caffa    Nil Nile

Venejia Venice

Azach Azov   Sinakan learn, Mt Sinai

Kipros Cyprus

Khorazm Oxiana

In the centre:

                                                                  Yerusaghem Jerusalem

The legend at the right of the T reads Ays koghms Afrika [This side is Africa]. Between the inscription and the Mediterranean, that is in western Africa, is a small circle which, being inland, can only denote a lake. Indeed, that is how it is identified, with the phrase Ays dzovis anunn Tuman [This Sea is named Tuman]. West of this water body, an unnamed river is shown by a pair of parallel red lines bearing the simple inscription Sea. These lines, drawn almost at right angles to the Mediterranean, connect with the outer Ocean. On the other (eastern) side of the legend indicating Africa a large red circle contains the legend Paravon yev zorqn Yegiptosi [Pharaoh and the army of Egypt]. To the right of this is the city of Alexandria (named Skandaria).

The Red Sea [Karmir] dzov; only the word sea is legible on the map) is shown as a bold open circle on the borders of Africa and Asia. It is outlined in black, colored solidly in red and interrupted as if to indicate the traditional crossing of the Israelites as they fled from Egypt. The legend that appears to refer to the Crossing of the Red Sea is worn and partly illegible. Southeast of this sea the inscription reads Misr-Yegiptos. Misr is the Arabic name of Egypt, used also in old Armenian, which the mapmaker has chosen to employ in conjunction with the later-day Armenian name of the country. Directly south of the Red Sea, near the shores of the surrounding Ocean, lies Ethiopia, named Hapash. The Nile is placed well inside Asia, where a vertical (east—west) red line running from close to the eastern Ocean towards the Red Sea bears the legend Ays dzovis anun Nil asen [This Sea is named Nile].

The division between Europe and Asia, normally marked with the horizontal crossbar of the T, here is demarcated with a single red line and is more complex. Two black lines, drawn at right angles to each other and to the red lines of the continental division and the Mediterranean, indicate the Aegean and Black Seas. A gap in the horizontal line for the Aegean, filled with the name Kostandnupolis [Constantinople], seems to imply that the line also represents the Dardanelles, the Sea of Marmara and the Bosporus. North of Constantinople, the vertical black line, inscribed only as Sea, represents the Black Sea. The northern extremity of the red line dividing Europe and Asia, beyond the eastern end of the Black Sea, must also stand for the Sea of Azov (for which there is no place-name) and the river Tanais. Three unnamed islands are placed in this area, all at the eastern end of the Black Sea. Although the whole representation may be highly schematic, the way that the Aegean Sea is depicted as branching off from the Mediterranean to the west of Jerusalem and the east—west alignment of Black Sea, shown at right angles to the northern end of the Aegean near Constantinople, presents a more faithful picture of reality than many other T-O maps.

In keeping with T-O maps in general, the greater part of the Armenian map is allocated to Asia, inscribed Ays koghms Asia [This side is Asia]. In the north, following the curve of the encircling Ocean, and on the borders of Europe and Asia, is written Rusq [Russia]. East of Russia a series of place-names is inscribed at right angles to the circle: Kafa [Caffa, the name given by the Italians to the Greek Crimean city of Theodosia], Tzamaq [Land], Azach [the city of Azov], Tzamaq [Land], Sara [Sarai], Tzamaq [Land], Khorazm [Oxiana] and finally, placed horizontally near the top of the map Kansaih [Khansai, a trading city in China]. Caffa is today the Ukrainian city of Feodosia in the Crimean Peninsula. Sarai refers to the capital of the Mongols; it is either Sarai-Batu (Old Sarai), built in 1240s, or Sarai-Berke [New Sarai], dating from around 1260. These cities were located in the region of Astrakhan, northwest of the Caspian Sea. The 14th century Arab traveler Ibn-Battuta (1304-1368/9) described the port of Khansai [Khansa in Arabic], located not far from Zaytun, another city on the map, as the largest metropolis in Chin. By adding the word Land between the toponyms, the mapmaker has tried to show that although these towns are widely separated and distant from each other, they constitute a chain of cities along a route that can only be the Silk Road.

In the east, in the upper part of the map close to the Ocean are the names Khaytai [China] and Zaytun [Zaytun], another Chinese trading port city. Zaytun was the Arabic name given to the port of Quanzhou or Tseu-Tung in the province of Fujian, China. In the Middle Ages it was an important trading centre for Arabs and Persians. According to Ibn-Battuta, this was the largest port [he] had ever seen, which could easily accommodate more than 100 large Chinese junks. The port was located across the sea from the island of Formosa. The 13th century traveler Marco Polo mentions Zai-tun and Kin-sai as being important cities, trading with Japan (Zipangu), as well as with the Arabs and Persians. Then comes Ashkharq Hndkatz [Lands of the Indians], followed well to the southeast by Hndkastan [Hindustan or India]. In the Middle Ages, the designation India was used loosely to refer to the lands east of Persia, Media and the Middle East. So here Lands of the Indians most probably refer to the northern and western neighbors of India, such as Persia and its neighboring countries, while Hndkastan denotes India proper.

The presence of these toponyms in the area between Europe and China bears witness to the importance of these towns and provinces in trade and commerce between East and West and is perhaps indicative of the period of the map’s creation. It may also be that this is the earliest Christian map on which the toponyms Caffa, Azov, Sarai, Zaytun and Khansai are found. Zaytun and Khansai appear on the Catalan Atlas of 1375 (#246) as Ciutat de Zaytun and Ciutat de Cansay, respectively; Fra Mauro’s map of 1459 (#249) contains these toponyms as Cayton and Chansay. Finally, towards the center of the map we see the cities of Merdin [Mardin], Baghdat [Baghdad] and Dmshkh [Damascus], all of which were important trading centers.

The dating of this map has been controversial. The geographer Mkrdich Khachaturian’s suggestion that the map dates from 1206 is unlikely to be correct. His conjecture was based on the assumption that all the toponyms on the map are contemporary with the time of its creation. Furthermore he claimed that since Mardin appears prominently on the map, it must have been made before the conquest of that city by the Arabs, in the early 13th century. These are doubtful lines of argument; information took time to be disseminated, and maps were only slowly updated. Moreover, in the case of the Western mappaemundi the very essence of the map was the inclusion of old (historical as well as biblical) information together with contemporary places and events. It was usual for medieval maps, in short, to depict conditions in existence some time before their creation.

There is nothing, then, untoward in the inclusion on the Armenian map of Sara (Sarai), a city founded only in the 1240s by Batu Khan, the grandson of Mongol leader Gangiz Khan, who took over the territory of southern Russia and its Turkic speaking peoples during the early 13th century. The Flemish Franciscan William de Rubruck (1220-1293), who in 1253 travelled to the region, stated that [Sarah] Batu was one of the most important cities of the region. This posed a problem for Khachaturian, however, and he therefore had to insist that the toponym Sara related not to Sarai-Batu but to some other location, perhaps a putative island in the Caspian Sea, even though the Caspian is neither mentioned on the map nor has it ever had an inhabited island named Sara.

Khachaturian also proposed that based on palaeographic evidence, the map was made in the Cilician Kingdom of Armenia during the Crusades, unfortunately not specifying which Crusade. It is hardly possible to date a manuscript precisely based on palaeography alone, and, furthermore, the script used on the map is similar to that in a manuscript produced in Caffa in 1445 (Matenadaran, MS 8963), which is another collection of astrological and scientific subjects, with diagrams and calendars. Looking at the toponyms shown on the map, the question arises why a Cilician-Armenian mapmaker would have included the names of cities along the distant northern Silk Road, instead of the toponyms in his locality. This argument too lacks proper foundation.

Caffa, the first town listed in the row of toponyms along the northeastern periphery of the map, was only a small Crimean seaside town until the 13th century. Only after Genoese merchants had leased it from the Mongols, was it transformed into a flourishing commercial centre, trading with the East and rivaling the Venetian- controlled city of Tanais on the Sea of Azov. The earliest mention of Caffa in Armenian literature dates from the middle of the 13th century. By the middle of the 14th century, when numerous monastic scriptoria were in operation, the majority of Caffa’s population of 70,000 were Armenian.

The presence of the name Caffa on the map is a strong indication that the map was made during the city’s heyday, namely in the 14th century. Such a date would fit the suggestion that the Armenian mapmaker, who was most likely to have been a monk, either saw or was told about contemporary Italian T-O maps in Caffa, a city not only administered by the Genoese, but also to all intents and purposes functioning as an Italian city, and one of the most suitably located Armenian communities for intellectual as well as commercial contact with the West.

Since, in my view, the map has to postdate both the establishment of Sarai-Batu and Sarai-Berke (New Sarai, established 1257-1266) and the time when Caffa became an important conurbation, it cannot be dated to earlier than the third quarter of the 13th century. Hovhannes Hovhannisian, the other Armenian geographer who has studied the map, argues that the presence of the commercial centers of Khorazm [Oxiana] and Sarai are indicative of the period when the Mongols had close connections with Khorazm (that is, from the 1240s to the 1360s), and this explains the rationale behind his dating the map to as late as 1360. In Rouben Galichian’s view, the most creditable hypothesis is that the map was created between the late-13th and mid-14th centuries, or even slightly later, which is in line with Hovhannisian’s proposal.

While the majority of T-O maps produced in the Christian West depict Armenia, Mount Ararat and Noah’s Ark, this Armenian mapmaker has chosen not to mention any of these Armenian features. Other biblical events and places are shown on the map, however: Jerusalem, the giving of the Tablets of the Law to Moses, Mount Sinai and the Red Sea. The legend to the southeast of Palestine, between Mount Sinai and the Nile reads Takhtak orinatz zor yet[ur] a[stua]tz Movs[es]i, which translates Tablets of law that God gave Moses. The toponym for Mount Sinai reads Sinakan learn. In addition, two legends in Palestine read Yekin anapatn [Came to the monastery] and Yekin Ye[rusaghe]m sakavq [A few came to Je[rusale]m].

Monasteries are mentioned on very few Western maps. While the Hereford mappamundi, c.1290 (#226) and the Sawley map, 1180 (#215) each show a monastic establishment, the references to these have been placed on the banks of the Nile. The Armenian language has several different words that mean monastery, among them liana, menastan and ananpat. Significantly, in the present context, the usual meaning of the last is desert. The monastery on the Armenian map is not named but is defined as ananpat, which suggests a conscious choice, since on the Hereford map the whole legend reads Monasteria Sancti Antonii in deserto. Since the two Western maps and the Armenian map seem to have been made within one hundred and one hundred fifty years of each other, we can see the reference on the respective maps as further confirmation of the possibility of a common source.

In the end, the absence of reference on the Armenian map to Armenia itself or to any of its immediate neighbors, such as Persia and Assyria, is more puzzling. It can plausibly be deduced, that the author was familiar with Central Asia since current trends in commercial and political relations are well represented by the depiction of the Silk Road cities and major trading centers such as Baghdad, Damascus, Constantinople and Venice. It may also be suggested that the mapmaker was a native of the region, very likely from 14th century Caffa, then one of the most important Armenian cultural centers and the source of a large number of manuscripts of that date. Arguably, the lack of any references to Armenia itself could be attributed to the fact that he lived far from his homeland and felt no particular affinity with it.

The existence of this Armenian language T-O map, though, may be owed simply to the curiosity of an individual whose interest in Western maps and literature would have been a sufficient reason for him to create a map of his own in line with those of the Western mapmakers of the time, leaving us an Armenian map as remarkable for its uniqueness as for the hints it gives of the interconnections underlying the T-O maps and the mappaemundi of the West.

Location: Matenadaran archive collection in Yerevan, capital of Armenia

Size: 12.5 cm diameter


Galichian, R., “A Medieval Armenian T-O Map”, Imago Mundi, 60:1 2008, pp.86-92

Khachaturian, Mkrdich M., “Medieval oval map in Armenian”, History of Science and Natural Sciences in Armenia (Yerevan, Academy of Sciences of Armenia, 1976), 6: 213-39 (in Armenian)).

This is a very late example of a T-O world map, probably made in Bruges in 1482 for King Edward IV, the founder of the old Royal Library. A sumptuous example of Flemish illumination illustrating an encyclopedic work, it embodies the spirit of medieval civilization. Asia occupies the left, Africa the top right and Europe the lower right portions. The Mediterranean Sea is not shown and only the black African faces convey a hint of reality. The Royal Library was presented to the British Museum as a foundation gift by George II in 1757 (Royal MS 15 E III f.67v)


205T-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, Günter Zainer 1472, 6.4 cm/2.5 dia

205A1T-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, detail ,Günter Zainer, 1472. 64 cm dia

205AA Y-O map from MS of Bede’s De natura rerum, John of Wallingford, 12508.2 cm diameter

205BT-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, ca. 1500

205B2T-O map reconstruction, unknown, modern

205B3T-O map reconstruction, unknown, modern

205BBByzantine-Oxford T-O map, unknown, 1110, 17 cm dia, Abby of Thorney, England, MS 17, fol 6r

205CT-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 10th century, 11.5 cm dia, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Florence, Plut. 27 sin 8, fol. 64v

205C1T-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, modern, 11.5 cm diameter

205CCDiagram map from MS of Bede’s De natura rerum, Bede, 9th century, 24 cm square, Bayerische Staatsbibliotek, Munich, Clm 210, f. 132v

205DT-O Map, unknown, 13th century, 26.9 X 15.9 cm

205DD Isidore mappamundi, unknown, 11th century, 26 cm dia, Bayerische Staatsbibliotek, Munich, Clm 10058, f. 154v

205ET-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, Santarem s Atlas compose de mappemondes . . . Paris 1849

205EESitus Hierusalem (map of Jerusalem), unknown, ca. 1100, 21.5 X 12.7 cm

205FT-O maps from 12th cen. Sallust MS + from Zacharias Orbis breviarium, unknown, 12th cen./1493, Biblioteca Vaticana

205FFmap of Jerusalem, unknown, 12th century, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, Ms. 76 F 5, fol.ir

205GT-O Sallust map, unknown

205GG Circular Plan of Jerusalem, unknown, 13th century, 26 cm diameter, British Library, Additional MS. 32343, f. 15v

205HT-O Sallust map from Bellum Jugurthinum, unknown, 14th century, Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, Venice, Fond. Ant. Lat. 432

205HH Reverse T-O map from MS of Isidore’s De natura rerum, unknown, 12th century, 19 cm diameter, Cathedral Curch of Exeter, MS. 3507, fol. 67r

205IT-O from Strasburg MS, unknown, 9th century, Strasburg MS

205IIT-O Map, unknown, 13th century, Strasburg MS

205JT-O Map, unknown

205JJT-O map from MS of Isidore’s De natura rerum, unknown, 9th century, 12.5 cm diameter, Burgerbibliothek, Bern, Codex 417, fol. 88v, Bern

205KT-O from Jean Mansel’s La fleur des histiores, Lambert of St. Omer, 15th century, 30 X 22 cm, Bibliotheque Royale Albert Ier, Brussels, MS. 9231, fol. 281v

205KKT-O map showing 4th continent, unknown, 11 cm diameter, Stiftsbibliothek, Codex Eins. 263 [973], fol. 182r, Einsiedeln

205LT-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 13th century, 18.5 X 18.5 cm

205LLSallust T-O map from De bello Jugurthino, West oriented, unknown, 6.8 cm diameter, Bibliotheque Nationale, MS. Lat.6253, fol. 52v, Paris

205MT-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 8th century, 22 X 29 cm, Vatican Library, MS Vat. lat. 6018, fols 63v-64r

205MM Sallust T-O map with symmetrical rivers, unknown, 13th century, 10.5 cm diameter, Gonville and Caius College, MS. 719/748, fol. 37v, Cambridge

205NSallust T-O map, unknown, 13th century, 10.5 cm diameter, Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge MS. 719/748, fol. 37r

205NN Climatic Zone and T-O maps, from Novissime Hystoriae, Giacomo Foresti

205OT-O Sallust map, unknown, 13th century, 4.3 cm diameter, Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, MS Lat. 6088 Reg 5974, fol. 33v

205OO T-O List Map, 10th cent, 11 cm dia, British Library, BL Cotton MS Vitellius A.XII. fol. 64r

205PPT-O Map, 12th century, 7 cm diameter, John Rylands University, Rylands MS 8, fol. 8v

205QT-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 10th century, 11.5 cm diameter, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Florence, Plut. 27 sin. 8, fol. 64v

205QQ Sallust T-O map, 11th century, 11 cm diameter, Bodleian Library, Bodleian MS Rawl.G.44, fol. 17v

205RT-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 13th century, 13 cm dia

205RRSallust & Lucan Maps, 14th century, 8.5 cm diameter, Bodleian Library, Bodleian MS lat.class.d.14, fol. 137v

205SY-O map from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 11th century, 10.8 cm dia

205SSArnstein Bible Map, 12th century, 27 cm dia, British Library, BL MS Harl. 2799, fol. 241v

205TT-O and -V maps from Isidore of Seville’s Etymologiarum, unknown, 12th century, 7.2 cm diameter, BnF, Manuscrits (Latin 10293 fol. 139)

205TTT-O world map by Chatillon, Gautier de Chatillon, 13th century, 7 cm diameter, Bodleian Library, MS Bod. 527, fol. 189v

205UT-O map, Marcus Annaeus Lucanus, unknown, 14th century, 13.8 cm diameter

205UU John of Walligford World Map, John of Walligford, c. 1250, 8.2 cm diameter, British Library, BL Cotton MS Julius D.VII, fol.46r

205VT-O map, north orientation, Gautier de Chatillon, 13th century, 10.4 cm diameter

205V1Gauthier de Chatillon mappimundi, Alexandreis, Gauthier de Chatillon, 13th century, Bibliotheque Nationale, Fonds Francais 11334, fol. 1

205VVPsalter Map, unknown, c. 1265, 9 cm diameter, British Library, BL Add. MS 28681, fol.9v

205WY-O map from Macrobius’ Commentarium in somnium Scipionis, unknown, 12th century, 8.7 cm diameter, Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, MS. Lat. 16679, fol. 33v

205WW Modified T-O Map, 12th century, 9 cm diameter

205XT-O map from MS of L’ image du monde, Gautier de Metz, 13th century, 6.6 cm diameter, Bibliotheque Municipale Verdun (lost)

205XXT-O map, first to name Greenland, ca. 1300

205YT-O map from MS of Commentary on the Apocalypse of Saint John (Beatus), unknown, 11th century, 4.7 cm diameter, Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, MS. Lat. 8878, fol. 7r

205YYZonal Map by William of Conches, 14th century, Bodleian Library, MS Digby 107, fol. 30v

205ZT-O map from MS of Bede’s De natura rerum, Bede, 12th century, 8.1 cm diameter, Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris, MS. Lat. 11130, fol. 82r

205Z10 TO Isidore of Seville, 1175, Royal 12 F.IV, f.135v Diagrammatic world map, c.1175 (vellum), British Library BL 11246

205Z12 Fitzwilliam TO, 1220-1230, 16.5 cm diameter (26.3 x 17.8 cm), Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, Fitzwilliam MS 254

205Z13 TO, unknown

205Z14 TO, Gautier de Chatillon, 13th century, 7cm diameter, Bodleian Library, MS Bod. 527, fol. 189v, English

205Z15 TO, unknown

205Z16 TO, unknown

205Z17 TO, unknown

205Z18 TO, unknown

205Z2Mappamundi on the Tomb of Darius, c. 1425-50, Alexander in Historienbijbel, The Hage; Koninklijke Bibliotheek, 128C2, fol. 84v

205Z22 TO, , unknown, British Library

205Z3Mappamundi from Livre des proprietes des choses, Jean Corbechon, c. 1372, 40.5 x 30 cm, BnF, Manuscrits (Fr 9140 fol. 243v).

205Z5Mappamundi from Description de la Confederation helvetique, Albert de Bonstetten,15th century, 42 x 32.5 cm, BnF, Manuscrits (Latin 5656 fol. 5v-6)

205Z6Mappamundi from L’ Image du monde, Gossuin de Metz, 13th century, 6 x 6 cm, BnF, Manuscrits (Fr 1607 fol. 43)


*Beazley, C., The Dawn of Modern Geography, volume II, pp. 577-578; 628-632.

*Bricker, C., Landmarks in Mapmaking, p. 45.

*Brown, L., The Story of Maps, pp. 96-97.

*Brown, L. A., The World Encompassed, numbers 9, 10, and 11.

*Destombes, M., Mappemondes, A.D. 1200-1500, 29-34, 54-64.

*Edson, E., Mapping Time and Space, How Medieval Mapmakers viewed their World, pp. 162-3.

*Edson, E., The world Map, 1300-1492, pp. 2728, 173, 204.

* Edson, E., “World maps and Easter tables: Medieval maps in context”, Imago Mundi: 48:1, pp.  


*Galichian, R., “A Medieval Armenian T-O Map”, Imago Mundi, 60:1, pp. 87-92.

*Galichian, R., Countries South of the Caucasus in Medieval Maps: Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan, pp. 21, 51.

Gautier Dalche, Patrick. La Descriptio mappae mundi de Hugues de Saint-Victor. Paris: Ãtitudes augustiniennes, 1988.

Gautier Dalche, Patrick. "Deux lectures et un commentaire de Jean Scor: Censorinus, Aulu-Gelle (livres I et III) et Bède le Venerable." Revue d'histoire des textes 21 (1991): 115-133.

Gautier Dalche, Patrick. "De la glose à la contemplation. Place et fonction de la carte dans les manuscrits du haut moyen age." In Testo e immagine nell'alto medioevo, 693-771. Settimane di studi del Centro italiano di studi sull'alto medioevo 41. Spoleto: Centro italiano di studi sull'alto medioevo, 1994.

*Harley, J. B., The History of Cartography, Volume One, pp. 255, 301-303, 320, 343.

*Harvey, P. D. A., Medieval Maps, Plate 16.

*Kimble, G., Geography of the Middle Ages, p. 23.

*Kupfer, M., “The Noachide Dispersion in English Mappae Mundi c. 960 – c. 1130”, Peregrinations: Journal of Medieval Art & Architecture, Volume IV, No. 1,pp. 81-106.

*Nebenzahl, K., Maps of the Holy Land, p. 33, Plates 3, 8, 9, 10.

*Needham, J., Science and Civilisation in China, volume 3, pp. 529-531.

*Scafi, A., Mapping Paradise, pp. 202-203, Figure 8.2

*Talbert, Richard J. A., Unger, R. W., Cartography in Antiquity and the Middle Ages: Fresh Perspectives, New Methods (Technology and Change in History), 2008, 299 pp.

*Van Duzer, C. & Dines, I. “The only Mappamundi in a Bestiary Context: Cambridge, MS Fitzwilliam 254”, Imago Mundi, Vol. 58, Part 1, pp. 7-22.

*Van Duzer, C., Sea Monsters on Medieval and Renaissance Maps, pp. 60-61, Figure 34.

*Van Duzer, C. “A Neglected Type of Medieval Mappamundi and its Re-Imaging in the Mare Historiarum (BNF MS LAT. 4915, FOL. 26V)”

*Wright, J., Geographical Lore at the Time of the Crusades, pp. 66-67; 123.

* illustrated

To see examples of T-O maps, see #205.1, #205.2, #205.3