Sixth Map of Asia: Which Includes Arabia Felix, Carmania, and the Persian Gulf


This map from Ptolemy’s Geographia was published in 1578 and reprinted on many occasions between 1584 and 1704. It is much more finely engraved than maps in previous Ptolemy editions. The map mentions several places in present-day Qatar (Abucei, Leaniti, Themi, Asateni, and Aegei). Names added to this edition of the map include Mesmites Sinus, Idicar, and a second Idicar, located in present-day Kuwait. This name is similar to the island of “Ichara” found near Magorum Sinus. Contemporary research has confirmed that Kharj is the island known to the ancients as “Icara.” One of the major peninsulas shown on the map is named “Chersonesi Extrema,” near Catara. Modern scholarship has identified Chersonesos as Ra's Rakan in present-day Qatar. Ichtyophagorium Sinus is the gulf inhabited by the people identified in ancient histories as the “Fish Eaters.” Claudius Ptolemaeus, known in English as Ptolemy, was an ancient mathematician, astronomer, geographer, and astrologer who was born sometime after 83 A.D., most likely in a town in the Thebaid called Ptolemais Hermiou in Roman Egypt. He lived in Egypt and died in Alexandria around the year 168.

Last updated: December 15, 2016