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21

They identify the size of the formation. That Free French unit you referred to with one X is actually a brigade, not a division. Similarly, the Greek and German unit facing each other German unit both have a single X, and has been explicitly labelled as brigades. All other units, including the Italian one you mentioned, have XX - indicating they are ...


20

The Prime Meridian we use now was the one the British chose, since it went through Greenwich Observatory near London. France had their own where Paris was 0 degrees, the US had one. When the situation of each nation having its own longitude got too annoying, they picked one. England's won out because of 2 factors: 1) England was the largest power at the ...


13

The book "Longitude" discusses this, and says the international standardization of the prime meridian arose mainly due to the publication of practical astronomical tables which used the Greenwich meridian. As ships started using these tables for navigation (as opposed to dead reckoning), they naturally switched to using the Greenwich meridian if they hadn't ...


12

There is a German Wikipedia entry for it, but I found no entry for this specific 'Schwedenschanze'. It is a military Sconce (fortification) (German: Schanze) or Hill fort, the name is based on the Thirty Years' War. Sweden (German: Schweden) was a participant during the war. It is not necessary, that the Schwedenschanze you found is a real Swedish sconce. ...


12

The convention was established by Ptolemy (AD 90 – c. AD 168) in his main work, Geography. The following is a 15th century reconstruction of Ptolemy's world map: It's an arbitrary decision, and several reversed maps exist. There are also maps that don't follow a standard orientation, some examples are T and O maps, polar maps, and Dymaxion/Fuller maps. ...


11

Your question assumes that some kind of a formal decision was made and that most countries explicitly agree that there is an official demarcation. As this boundary is mostly cartographical, no country has ever, to the best of my knowledge, made an issue out of this location. It's been the practice to just use whatever demarcation that other cartographers ...


11

The first satellite image of Earth was taken in 1959. At that time, as far as I can tell, aerial photography and stereoplotters were used to produce topographic maps with accuracy that I imagine would have depended mostly on the quality of the aerial photographs, but probably down to a few meters. For larger maps depicting the Earth, I think the answer ...


10

Some maps from some UK universities http://oldmapsonline.org/


10

The maps were almost as accurate as they are after the launch of satellites. And this has little to do with air photography. And celestial navigation ("sextants" hinted in the previous message) was responsible only for mapping of remote islands. The main method of making accurate maps was geodesic survey. One begins with laying a base, that is measure ...


9

This is a rough translation (work in progress). Notice that the text is rhymed, and some of it (I find ) it is illegible. 2 Norway and Sweden \\ Loving to make progress these nations both \\ they advance in the art of lazy bones 3 Finland \\ Even among bears the priestly tail \\ Attempts to place herself and summon factions \\ But only those ...


9

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_cartography has a very good description. Ptolemy suggested mapping a spherical earth with lines of longitude/latitude but didn't do very much field work. There are Arabic maps from C9-C10 which used astronomical observations to get their important cities in the right place. The maps from 1500 are essentially ...


8

http://www.euratlas.net/history/europe/index.html This is by far the best map website, it has maps from 1AD to 2000AD. http://www.euratlas.net/antique/cartography/index.html


7

Here are some sites that I like: • Historical maps, University of Texas (more to come)


6

I realise I am very late in answering this, but I cannot stress this enough: the best source by far for historical maps that I have ever found, is David Rumseys amazing online collections I would also like to point you in the direction of this book; Cartographies of Time though it might be more time-space related than what you are looking for.


5

The first thing I can think of is Portolan charts, the Wikipedia page is not very clear but it links here which has some more information. (full frameset for the second link)


5

The Wikipedia page on the British Official History of the Great War. A lot of the volumes are available as PDFs in various web archives. For example, this map, in the chapter on First Contact with the Enemy is extracted from a volume freely available:


5

"Europe" can mean different things depending on context. To geologists, there is no such thing as a distinct European land-mass since it is inseparable from Asia (hence Eurasia). Politically, Europe might mean the member states of the EU or the EEC. In sporting terms, Israel and Kazakhstan are in Europe. According to Turkey, country is entirely in Europe, ...


5

Although Euclid is renowned for his compilation of the axioms and theorems of plane geometry, most if not all of this material had been known for centuries. With these mathematical tools, and the use of strings and simple pedometers and protractors, remarkably accurate maps could be drawn by the ancients for territories that were relatively level and ...


4

They symbolize the sizes of units (so if the flag represent a division with 10,000 people or an army with 200,000) On smaller maps you may also see dots or lines. .-squad ..-platoon I-Company II-Battalion III-Regiment X-Brigade XX-Division XXX-Corp XXXX-Army XXXXX-Army Group XXXXXX-Theather


3

I think if there would be some Italian guy here and could translate all the sentences, it would be easier. Here's my try. In Algeria the Arab man represents French problems there. Of course Russia is bad so it is represented as an ugly butcher. Poland is divided by three states (notice chains). There are fightings in Balkans. The man kicking is probably ...


3

The main significant contribution to map making before satellites were triangulation. The first world maps that I would call reasonably accurate turn up at the beginning of the 19th century, like this one. Even then you have small problems (compare the shape of Norway, for example) but there are no huge mistakes that jump out at you immediately. At the end ...


3

There were a couple of islands in Laptev sea. Semenovsky and Vasilievsky. They are present, for example, in wikimapia (the mark is in russian, it says melted Semenovsky island). Wikipedia states: Storms and currents due to the ice thawing significantly erode the islands, so the Semenovsky and Vasilievsky islands (74°12"N, 133°E) which were ...


3

This may not count as "modern", but its a good story along the vein you are looking for ... In July of 1610 Galileo was still making discoveries faster than he could publish descriptions of them. On the 25th he discovered that Saturn was apparently situated between two smaller companions that always moved together. Wanting to establish his priority ...


2

That appears to be the survey of LA drawn out by Lieutenant Edward Ord in 1849. If so, then the Fort Street in the grid-like area in the upper left area of the map later became Broadway street. Hill Street, the next over from Fort Street on the survey, is still the next street NW from Broadway today. As for where on Broadway that is, I'd say its almost ...


2

A modern example is New Moore/South Talpatti island on the border of India and Bangladesh. Google Maps shows it but Bing Maps does not. It seems to have been a sandbar which appeared in the 1970s but was washed away at a later date. The surprising thing is that although it has been subject to a major boundary dispute and although the surrounding ...


2

Comets are probably the most-modern equivalent to Phantom Islands of old - given that astronomical instruments are 'only so good' at keeping track of them (and similarly-orbiting space rocks) There is also a pseudo-'phenomenon' of online map errors, which could be seen similarly to phantom maps of old. Think of this especially in light of how map providers ...


2

According to Wikipedia, this division was first put forward in the 18th century by Philip Johan von Strahlenberg. It's best if I just quote the passage in full: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eurasia#History_of_the_Europe_and_Asia_division In ancient times, the Greeks classified Europe (derived from the mythological Phoenician princess Europa) and Asia ...


2

Just from researching the subject on Internet it is easy to see that the subject is very much charged with nationalist and politic agendas. Also if some detailed maps existed, exactly for the reign of Dahir they could not be undisputed, since there are obviously no scientific measures at that dates, also most of the historic references of Dahir are related ...


2

You could check Wikipedia In the immediate post-World War One period, Skalat was seized by local Ukrainian activists, who declared that the town was part of West Ukrainian People's Republic. Polish - Ukrainian tension escalated, and climaxed in the Polish–Ukrainian War. On April 23, 1919, Ukrainian activists murdered a popular Roman Catholic parish ...


2

National Geographic is generally considered the premier map maker since the inception of the society over a hundred years ago. The National Geographic 1970 World Map probably answers your question of "What was the most accurate map of the Earth before satellites?" Note that the premise of your question may be off kilter. In most cases it is not the accuracy ...



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