Newest Map of Arabia


This color map in German appeared as plate 80 in Grosser Hand-Atlas über alle Theile der Erde (Large portable atlas of all parts of the world), published by the Bibliographic Institute of Joseph Meyer (1796−1856). The map shows the Arabian Peninsula as well as neighboring parts of Africa, including Egypt, present-day Sudan, and Abyssinia (present-day Ethiopia). Colored lines are used to demarcate kingdoms and other political entities. El Bedaa, an old city in Qatar (now the Al Bida area of Doha), is shown. Three inset maps in the upper right hand corner show the cities of El Derreyeh (Ad Dir‘īyah), Mekka (Mecca), and Medina. An unusual feature of the map is the large number of distance scales provided, which reflects both the thoroughness of the mapmaker and the lack of international standardization at the time. They include geographic miles, English miles, French leagues, Dutch miles, Spanish leagues, Portuguese leagues, Italian miles, Danish miles, Swedish miles, Russian versts, Greek miles, and nautical miles. Meyer was a successful German businessman who founded the Bibliographic Institute as a publishing house in 1826. The firm specialized in producing low-cost editions of the classics, atlases, encyclopedias, and other books for purchase by the general public.

Last updated: June 17, 2014