Wednesday, August 01, 2007

13 Milestones in Geography

Perhaps it's been awhile since you studied geography. Here are 13 milestones in the field:

1. 2900 B.C.-The Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt is built. Perfectly square at the base and is aligned perfectly on North, South, East, and West lines.

2. 2300 B.C.-A map of the city of Lagash in Mesopotamia is carved in stone in the lap of a statue of a god… is the oldest known “city map”

3. 530 B.C.-The Pythagoreans teach the Earth is a sphere and not in the shape of a disk.

4. 240 B.C.-Eratosthenes calculates the circumference of the earth with near accuracy

5. 190-120 B.C.-Hipparchus, a Greek astronomer, is the first to use latitude and longitude.

6. 271 A.D.-Magnetic compass is used in China

7. 1000 A.D.-Vikings colonize Greenland and “discover” America, establish a colony in Newfoundland. Their stay is brief and has no lasting impact. The word discover has quotes around it because there are several theories concerning others who were first to discover, and let's not forget that the Native Americans who lived there already knew about it. :)

8. 1275 A.D.-Marco Polo arrives in China, enters the service of Kublai Kahn. Polo’s book appears in 1299.

9. 1375 A.D.-The Catalan Atlas is completed by Abraham Cresques and was commissioned by the King of France. It contained stories concerning the riches of Mali that told tales that gold “grew like carrots” and was brought up “by ants in the form of nuggets” and was mined by “naked men who lived in holes.”

10. 1405 A.D.-Chinese begin voyages in Indian Ocean under Admiral Cheng Ho who was later known as the Chinese Christopher Columbus for his wide ranging voyages.

11. 1492 A.D.-Columbus lands in the New World though he believes he has reached the Asian continent.

12. 1497-98 A.D.-Vasco da Gama becomes the first European to sail to India and back.

13. 1507 A.D.-the Walseemuller map names the New World after Amerigo Vespucci, not Columbus. There are other theories regarding how the continent received the name America besides the "Amerigo" story.

You can visit other 13s here.


Joely Sue Burkhart said...

Very cool list--I love the Giza pyramids! Happy TT!

Anonymous said...

Great list. One thing our society is missing is a solid sense of history -- which may be why our "leaders" so often make such terrible political decisions.

EHT said...

Great comment, the may have reached "the crux" of the problem. :)

Anonymous said...

Great list!

Fascinating stuff.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Neat stuff. I liked hearing about the Chinese Christopher Columbus.

Ready for school to start back up?

pussreboots said...

Interesting list. I'll keep in mind when my son starts school. :D

Happy TT.

Anonymous said...

Fascinating list

EHT said...

Thanks for stopping by....Susan, I'm not ready for school to start back up, but it's here ready or not.:)

JHS said...

I love coming here and learning new things!

Robin said...

I've been to Giza - quite a place!

Nancy Lindquist-Liedel said...

Yes, but my peoples are not native to America either. We just got here really, really early ;)

Nancy who is NA.

Alasandra, The Cats and Dogs said...

Thanks for some interesting historical tidbits. There are several that I want to know more about the Chinese Christoper Columbus for one, so off to the library I go.

My TT is about August.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting!!

EHT said...

Hi Nancy. Did you know that there are some origin tales in various tribal cultures that claim the Native Americans were always here and did not migrate over land from Europe or arrive by boat.

Alasandra...Cheng Ho is also known as Zheng He. The History Channel aired a documentary not too long ago regarding him.

Laura...thanks for visiting. I love my regulars, but simply adore new readers.

Tink said...

Interesting stuff as always! My TT is about geography (and a bit of history) on a smaller level: my country!