A Map of North Western Arabia and Nejd
This map shows portions of present-day Jordan and Saudi Arabia. It was drawn by British traveler Charles Montagu Doughty (1843−1926) and published in 1884. A similar map accompanied the first edition of Doughty’s famous Travels in Arabia Deserta, published in 1888. The map shows northwestern Arabia and Nejd (Najd), the remote uplands of central Saudi Arabia. It shows significant topographic detail and human habitation as well as the routes Doughty took as he zigzagged with caravans and guides from Damascus to the outskirts of Mecca. The map fills a single sheet with an inset depicting the early part of Doughty’s journey from Jerash, or Jarash, in the north to Aqaba in the south (both in present-day Jordan). Along with Doughty’s routes, the map shows roads, settlements, caravan routes, and wadis. Relief is shown by hachures and the scale is in miles. The map was published by Edward Stanford for the Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society. Stanford (1827–1904) was a London map seller and publisher who established his business in 1853 and who catered to explorers and political figures. Unlike many British scholar-soldier-diplomats who traveled across Arabia, Doughty was primarily a scholar. His purpose in traveling to Arabia was to shed light on one of the hinterlands of biblical history. His copies of pre-Islamic inscriptions later were published in France. His prose style was compared by some to the King James Version of the Bible, although others found fault with Doughty’s combination of Victorian style and Elizabethan syntax. Doughty himself warned about Travels in Arabia Deserta, “The book is not milk for babies.” After slow public recognition, the book achieved status as a classic. Doughty is also remembered for his quirky six-volume epic poem of England’s mythical history, The Dawn in Britain.
Edward Stanford, London
Type of Item
1 map : color ; 45 x 51 centimeters
- Scale: 1:2,027,520. 1 inch = 32 miles (2.54 centimeters = 51.49 kilometers)
- Doughty, Charles M. Travels in Arabia Deserta, second edition, two volumes (London: Jonathan Cape, 1921, and Boston: Warner for the Medici Society, 1921).
Last updated: January 8, 2018