Cartographia offers a stunning array of 200 of the most beautiful, important, and fascinating maps in existence, from the world's largest cartographic collection, at the Library of Congress. These maps show how our idea of the world has shifted and grown over time, and each map tells its own unique story about nations, politics, and ambitions. The chosen images, with their accompanying stories, introduce the reader to an exciting new way of "reading" maps as travelogues---living history from the earliest of man's imaginings about planet earth to our current attempts at charting cyberspace.
Among the rare gems included in the book are the Waldseemuller Map of the World from 1507, the first to include the designation "America"; pages from the Ortelius's Theatrum Orbis Terrarum of 1570, considered the first modern atlas; rare maps from Africa, Asia, and Oceania that challenge traditional Western perspectives; William Faulkner's hand-drawn 1936 map of the fictional Yoknapatawpha County, Mississippi; and even a map of the Human Genome. In an oversized format, with gorgeous four-color reproductions throughout.
Anyone alive in the eighteenth century would have known that "the longitude problem" was the thorniest scientific dilemma of the day--and had been for centuries. Lacking the ability to measure their longitude, sailors throughout the great ages of exploration had been literally lost at sea as soon as they lost sight of land. Thousands of lives, and the increasing fortunes of nations, hung on a resolution.
The scientific establishment of Europe--from Galileo to Sir Isaac Newton--had mapped the heavens in both hemispheres in its certain pursuit of a celestial answer. In stark contrast, one man, John Harrison, dared to imagine a mechanical solution--a clock that would keep precise time at sea, something no clock had ever been able to do on land. Longitude is the dramatic human story of an epic scientific quest, and of Harrison's forty-year obsession with building his perfect timekeeper, known today as the chronometer. Full of heroism and chicanery, it is also a fascinating brief history of astronomy, navigation, and clockmaking, and opens a new window on our world.
Uses the principles of sacred geometry, archaeological evidence, and Native American legend to discover the site of a secret Templar settlement in Nova Scotia- Offers evidence that Scottish prince Henry Sinclair not only sailed to the New World 100 years before Columbus, but that he also established a refuge there for the Templars fleeing persecution - Shows that the Grail, the holy bloodline connecting the House of David to the Merovingian dynasty through Jesus and Mary Magdalene, was hidden in the New World In 1398, almost 100 years before Columbus arrived in the New World, the Scottish prince Henry Sinclair, Earl of Orkney, sailed to what is today Nova Scotia, where his presence was recorded by Micmac Indian legends about Glooskap. This was the same Prince Henry Sinclair who offered refuge to the Knights Templar fleeing the persecution unleashed against the order by French king Philip the Fair at the beginning of the 14th century. With evidence from archaeological sites, indigenous legend, and sacred geometry handed down by the Templar order to the Freemasons, author William F. Mann has now rediscovered the site of the settlement established by Sinclair and his Templar followers in the New World. Here they found a safe refuge for the Grail--the holy bloodline connecting the House of David to the Merovingian Dynasty through the descendants of Jesus and Mary Magdalene--until the British exiled all the Acadians in 1755.
In August 1914, days before the outbreak of the First World War, the renowned explorer Ernest Shackleton and a crew of twenty-seven set sail for the South Atlantic in pursuit of the last unclaimed prize in the history of exploration: the first crossing on foot of the Antarctic continent. Weaving a treacherous path through the freezing Weddell Sea, they had come within eighty-five miles of their destination when their ship, Endurance, was trapped fast in the ice pack. Soon the ship was crushed like matchwood, leaving the crew stranded on the floes. Their ordeal would last for twenty months, and they would make two near-fatal attempts to escape by open boat before their final rescue.Drawing upon previously unavailable sources, Caroline Alexander gives us a riveting account of Shackleton's expedition--one of history's greatest epics of survival. And she presents the astonishing work of Frank Hurley, the Australian photographer whose visual record of the adventure has never before been published comprehensively. Together, text and image re-create the terrible beauty of Antarctica, the awful destruction of the ship, and the crew's heroic daily struggle to stay alive, a miracle achieved largely through Shackleton's inspiring leadership. The survival of Hurley's remarkable images is scarcely less miraculous: The original glass plate negatives, from which most of the book's illustrations are superbly reproduced, were stored in hermetically sealed cannisters that survived months on the ice floes, a week in an open boat on the polar seas, and several more months buried in the snows of a rocky outcrop called Elephant Island. Finally Hurley was forced to abandon his professional equipment; he captured some of the most unforgettable images of the struggle with a pocket camera and three rolls of Kodak film. Published in conjunction with the American Museum of Natural History's landmark exhibition on Shackleton's journey, The Endurance thrillingly recounts one of the last great adventures in the Heroic Age of exploration--perhaps the greatest of them all.
In Runes of the North Sigurd Olson explores his feelings about the haunting appeal of the wilderness. He recounts how the legends of the northern vastness of Canada and Alaska have influenced him.
In the introduction, Olson writes, "My runes have come from the wilderness, for in its solitude, silence, and freedom .... I know there are moments of insight when ancient truths do stand out more vividly, and one senses anew his relationship to the earth and to all life".
Runes of the North explores these values, insights, and truths. Olson weaves the tales and myths with his own stories and experiences as an explorer, writer, grandfather, and biologist. "This inner world has to do with the wilderness from which we came", he writes, "timelessness, cosmic rhythms, and the deep feelings men have for an unchanged environment".
Olson tells of Native American legends and traditions, like dream catchers and wild rice harvests, as well as the pure pleasure of the Finnish sauna. Each story portrays the special magic one finds in the wilderness and is filled with moments, that Olson writes, "are worth waiting for, and when they come in some unheralded instant of knowing, they are of the purest gold".
Explores the unusual odyssey of Gilbert Joseph Bland, Jr., an antiques dealer from South Florida, who stole dozens of centuries-old maps from some of the most important research libraries in Canada and the U.S.