Surat Al-Ardh: The Muslim Masters of Mapmaking
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|1st - 2009
Cartography, a word of Greek origin, is the science and art of mapmaking and is an endeavor paramount in the intellectual development of human beings. When the Muslims of 9th century Baghdad decided to preserve the totality of classical Greek science in Arabic, the new language of civilization, they discovered Ptolemy. His Geography was a guide to map-making and enormously important for all Muslim map makers. Over the next five hundred years, Muslims increased their knowledge of geography and perfected their mapmaking skills, eventually producing maps of great complexity and beauty. Modern cartography has its origin in the many breakthroughs made by Muslim scientists, centuries ago.
This book is not meant to be a history of maps, but a celebration of some of the achievements of Muslim master map-makers. Insha-Allah, readers of this book will be encouraged to view maps of all kinds with greater appreciation, knowing the great amount of labor and learning that have facilitated their production.