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The Near East
This 1952 map by the Army Map Service of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers provides a broad overview of the Near East, the geographic region traditionally thought of as encompassing the countries of southwest Asia, including Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Israel, and Jordan, and the countries of the Arabian Peninsula. In addition to political borders, the map shows lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water, marshlands, cities by population, pipelines, railroads, and pumping stations. Above the key is a glossary of topographic terms with transliterations and translations into ...
Map of Northern Arabia: in Illustration of Lady Anne Blunt’s Journeys
This map shows the routes of two Arabian journeys taken in the late 1870s by Lady Anne Blunt (1837–1917) and her husband, the poet Wilfrid Scawen Blunt (1840–1922). Lady Anne was a skilled equestrienne and horse breeder, who purchased Arabian horses from Bedouin tribesmen, which she then had transported back to England. Her work did much to establish the Arabian breed in Britain. In 1878, Lady Anne journeyed from Beirut, across northern Syria, and south through Mesopotamia to Baghdad. From there she traveled north along the Tigris River ...
Map of Persia, Turkey in Asia: Afghanistan, Beloochistan
Samuel Augustus Mitchell (1792–1868) was a renowned American geographer and cartographer. The majority of his work focused on the United States, but he also made maps of other parts of the world, including this 1868 map of the Ottoman Empire, Persia (present-day Iran), Afghanistan, and Baluchistan. The main territorial units that Mitchell shows are Turkey, meaning the core of the Ottoman Empire comprised of present-day Turkey, Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon; Persia; Afghanistan; and Baluchistan (mainly present-day Pakistan). Egypt and much of the Arabian Peninsula were at that time technically ...
Persia, Arabia, Et cetera
This map appeared in A New Universal Atlas, published in 1846 by Henry Schenck Tanner, an early American geographer and cartographer. This map shows the political and geographic features of the Arabian Peninsula, using the traditional divisions of Arabia Petraea, Arabia Deserta, and Arabia Felix. Also shown are the region of the Hedjaz with the cities of Mecca and Medina, and Al-Dahna (present-day Kuwait and southern Iraq). The key in the bottom right differentiates between capitals, important towns, and smaller towns by means of starred and shaded circles. The boundaries ...
The Eastern Question in Europe and Asia
In the late-19th century, European politics were troubled by what had come to be called the “Eastern Question,” the fate of the 600-year Ottoman Empire. Once encompassing the Ottoman heartland of Anatolia (present-day Turkey), most of the Arab Middle East, and the Balkan Peninsula, by 1886 the empire had shrunk dramatically as a result of wars with European powers, Russia in particular, and revolts by subject peoples. This 1886 map, published in London, shows the Turkish Empire as comprised mainly of Albania, Thrace, Crete, Anatolia, and parts of the Arab ...
War Map of Egypt, Palestine, and Arabia
This German-language military map, published some time in the late-19th century, depicts Egypt, Palestine, and the Arabian Peninsula. It also includes parts of Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (present-day Sudan), Ethiopia, and Eritrea. Railroads, caravan routes, telegraph lines, pyramids, fortifications, and ruins are indicated by symbols shown in the key at the lower left. The German equivalents of some Arabic topographic terms are given. An inset map in the upper right shows the Nile Delta and the Sinai Peninsula. Relief is shown by shading, and the heights of important mountains and passes are ...
Persia, Arabia, Tartary, Afghanistan
This map by Thomas Gamaliel Bradford (1802–87), depicting parts of the Middle East and Central Asia, appeared in Bradford’s A Comprehensive Atlas: Geographical, Historical & Commercial, which was published in Boston in 1835. Bradford was born in Boston of a distinguished New England family. He made maps of both U.S. states and foreign countries and became the assistant editor of the Encyclopedia Americana, the first significant encyclopedia produced in the United States. The map uses colored lines to delineate the boundaries of the Persian Empire, Afghanistan, Arabia, and ...
The Near and Middle East: Balkan Peninsula
This map of the Near and Middle East was compiled in 1940 by the Geographical Section of the General Staff of the British Army and published by the War Office of the British government in 1941. The map shows topographic relief by gradient tints and indicates railroads, principal roads, secondary roads, caravan routes and tracks, the names and boundaries of provinces and districts, and deserts, rivers, swamps, and other topographic features. Towns and cities are classified and shown by categories, from first (capitals) to fifth in importance. Also shown are ...
General Map of the Turkish War Theater
This map, published in Berlin in July 1916, shows the Turkish theater of World War I. It is based on an 1884 map in French of the Asian provinces of the Ottoman Empire by German geographer and cartographer Heinrich Kiepert (1818–99). The map contains additional notes in German and its coverage of existing and projected railroads is updated to 1916. The Ottoman territories, shown in pink, include present-day Turkey, Cyprus, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan, as well as Saudi Arabia. The Ottoman Empire, or Turkey as it was ...
The Empire and Expeditions of Alexander the Great
This 1833 map in Latin shows the conquests of Alexander the Great (356–323 BC), whose empire stretched from present-day Greece through Turkey and the Middle East to Afghanistan. In 326 BC Alexander set out to conquer India, but he was stymied when his exhausted armies mutinied on the banks of the Hyphasis River (now known as the Beas River) in northern India. The map shows the cities that Alexander founded and named after himself, including Alexandria Arachosia (Kandahar, Afghanistan), Alexandria Ariana (Herat, Afghanistan), Alexandria, Egypt, and many others. Place-names ...
Kingdoms of the Successors of Alexander: After the Battle of Ipsus, B.C. 301
Alexander the Great (356–323 BC) died suddenly at the age of 32, leaving no apparent heir or appointed successor. Some 40 years of internecine conflict followed his death, as leading generals and members of Alexander’s family vied to control different parts of the vast empire he had built. The Battle of Ipsus, fought in Phrygia, Asia Minor (present-day Turkey) in 301 BC between rival successors, resulted in the empire’s irrevocable dissolution. This late-19th century map in Latin shows the four main kingdoms that emerged after the battle ...
This map of Southwest Asia dating from about 1866 shows the possessions of the European powers in this region. The map extends from Libya, Egypt, and Sudan in the west to Mongolia, China (Tibet), and Burma in the east. Colored lines are used to indicate territories controlled by Britain, France, Portugal, and the Ottoman Empire and to delineate what the map calls the kingdom of the imam of Oman. The names of provincial capitals are underlined. British territories in India are divided into six parts: Bengal, the Northwest Provinces, Panjab ...
Middle East Countries: Syria, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Jordan, Saudi-Arabia
This map of the Middle East, originally published in August 1950 and revised in February 1955, was issued by the Aeronautical Chart and Information Center, Air Photographic and Charting Service, Military Air Transportation Service (MATS), of the United States Air Force. In addition to Syria, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, it shows the eastern parts of Egypt and the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium of Sudan as well as parts of Eritrea and Ethiopia. Many borders on the map, particularly on the Arabian Peninsula, are shown as still undetermined. Territories shown ...
The Historical Theater in the Year 400 AD, in Which Both Romans and Barbarians Resided Side by Side in the Eastern Part of the Roman Empire
This map in Latin by the great French mapmaker Guillaume de L’Isle (1675–1726) shows the eastern parts of the Roman Empire circa 400 AD and the territory of adjacent tribes and kingdoms not under Rome’s control. The latter include the Sarmatians and the Scythians, peoples that the Romans regarded as barbarians. Arabia is shown divided into its three traditional divisions, Arabia Petrea, Arabia Felix, and Arabia Deserta. Qatar is indicated as “Catarei.” The eastern part of the map shows the empire of Alexander the Great, including Persia ...
Map of Asian-Eastern Turkey, Persia, Afghanistan, and Arabia
This map, published in Paris in 1842, shows the Asian provinces of the Ottoman Empire, Persia (present-day Iran), Afghanistan, and the Arabian Peninsula. The map appeared in Atlas universel de géographie ancienne et moderne (Universal atlas of ancient and modern geography) by the cartographer and engraver Pierre M. Lapie (1779–1850). Lapie was a member of the corps of topographical engineers in the French army, where he rose to the rank of colonel. He eventually became head of the topographical section in the Ministry of War. He was assisted by ...
Johnson’s Turkey in Asia, Persia, Arabia, etc.
This map of the Middle East and Central and South Asia extending from the Nile Valley to the boundary of Afghanistan with British India is from Johnson’s New Illustrated Family Atlas, published in New York in 1864. The map shows national capitals, provincial capitals, principal towns, and railroads. The Suez Canal, under construction at this time, is shown as proposed. The map provides a detailed overview of the towns and cities along the Nile in Egypt, Nubia (present-day southern Egypt and northern Sudan), and Sennar (present-day Sudan), and of ...
Colton's Persia, Arabia, Et cetera
This map of Persia (present-day Iran), the Arabian Peninsula, and neighboring countries originally appeared in the 1865 edition of Colton’s General Atlas. It extends from a part of Egypt (the Nile Delta) in the west to Afghanistan in the east and reflects the general level of geographic knowledge of the Middle East in mid-19th century America. Coloring is used to indicate borders and certain provinces or settled areas. The map shows cities, mountains, and roads, and includes some notes on topographical features. J.H. Colton & Company was founded in ...
Central Asia: Afghanistan and Her Relation to British and Russian Territories
This 1885 map shows Asia from the eastern littoral of the Mediterranean to western China and the Indian subcontinent. An inset in the upper right depicts the region in the broader context of Asia, Europe, and Africa. A focal point of the map is Afghanistan, where, in what was called “the Great Game,” the Russian and British empires competed for influence throughout most of the 19th century. The British feared that the Russians, who annexed large parts of Central Asia in the 1860s and 1870s, would use Afghanistan as a ...
Stanford's Map of Western Asia
This 1885 map of Western Asia shows the region from the Mediterranean Sea to British India, including the northern part of the Arabian Peninsula. This region was at the time under the rule of the Ottoman Empire in the west, independent Persia (present-day Iran) in the center, and independent Afghanistan in the east, with the Russian Empire to the north. Relief is shown by hachures, and the elevations of lakes and inland seas are given in feet (one foot = 30.48 centimeters) above sea level. The map indicates pilgrimage routes ...
A Map of the Countries between Constantinople and Calcutta: Including Turkey in Asia, Persia, Afghanistan and Turkestan
This 1885 map shows the region between Constantinople, capital of the Ottoman Empire, and British India, an area of intense imperial rivalry between the British and Russian Empires in the late-19th century. British possessions are colored in red and include British India, Cyprus, the Aden Protectorate (present-day Yemen), Socotra Island (Yemen), and the northern littoral of the Horn of Africa, which became the protectorate of British Somaliland (present-day Somalia) in 1888. The map shows railroad lines and submarine telegraph cables. The railroad network is at this time more developed in ...
Travels in Arabia
Travels in Arabia provides an overview, intended for a general audience, of the most important European travelers to Arabia in the 18th and 19th centuries. The book was compiled and written by Bayard Taylor (1825–78), an American poet, translator, and travel writer, and first published in 1872. Shown here is a slightly revised and updated edition, published in 1892. Following brief introductory chapters about the geography of Arabia and ancient travelers to Arabia, the book devotes one or more chapters to the following explorers: Carsten Niebuhr (1733–1815), a ...