I'm trying to calculate the date a globe was produced, using as a source its features, i.e. the names of the nations, the borders, the capitals, anything else that could have changed with time. This, considering that some info might be incorrect, so multiple evidence would help.

Seems legit

  • Germany is split: 1949-1990
  • Kinshasa's Congo is called Zaire: 1971-1997
  • Yemen is split: 1967-1990
  • Western Sahara is drawn striped: 1975-current


  • Namibia isn't drawn striped: 1990-current
  • Namibia's capital is Windhoek, but it's not clear to me if it was the same even under South African rule
  • Walvis Bay appears on the map, but it not attributed to South Africa: this would raise the lower bound to 1994, which is impossible given that the higher has twice been put to 1990, so I'd just consider info about Namibia to be unreliable (some micro-states just do not appear on the map, but I'd expect that if they do, then they would be attributed to the correct country)


If the Namibia's "independence" is correct, and Walvis Bay omission just a mistake, the year is 1990.

Assuming it's unreliable, or assuming I want more than once piece of evidence, currently it's 1975-1990: is there some other info I missed that I could check?


I'm arbitrarily deciding not to use other data, such as the name of the publisher, what I know about it, etc. Consider this an experiment I'm trying to do.

The 1990 date is very likely to be correct: as I said, consider this an experiment.


Pictures available here.

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    I think this is clear; he is asking when the globe was manufactured. Seems like a core history skill - to analyze a source to determine date and origin. – MCW Aug 8 '15 at 23:26

I've found this wikipedia page, which is precisely the list of "things I have to check" for this investigation.

It allowed me to raise the lower bound to be definitely 1984, and I doubt we can then get more precise than 1984-1990. Still, maybe I missed something, so better answers are welcome.

Useful data

  • Ouagadougou's nation is called Burkina (yes, they forgot the "Faso") instead of Alto Volta: 1984-current
  • Brunei is independent: 1984-current


  • We have Burma and Rangoon: it would make an upper-bound of 1989, but this is likely just a political or localisation problem (map is in Italian)
  • I'd just ignore Cambodia: it's too complex, and it might have localisation problems anyway

No info

  • Micronesia's capital (it changed in 1989) is not present
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    Do you mean Burma hasn't been renamed Myanmar? I'm not sure of the details but I'm confident that isn't reliable in dating a globe or atlas. It declared itself Myanmar but for various reasons the name change wasn't respected by Western (at least) media for some time. I think it was contentious for some specific reason (and not just that the regime was undemocratic). – Tea Drinker Aug 8 '15 at 13:47
  • @TeaDrinker exactly : ) – o0'. Aug 8 '15 at 13:51

Its possible I can narrow it down further, due to there being no red box in the Pacific for the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands. That puts it at 1986 or later.

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  • Good point, great! – o0'. Aug 9 '15 at 8:24

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