Pingjiang tu. Historic map, Library of Congress
Stone rubbing dated between 1858 and 1869. One of the earliest and biggest stone rubbing maps in China.
Original stone was engraved in 1229 under Li Shoupeng. The map is now in the Museum of Engraved Stone Tablets in Suzhou, China.
Shows temples, bridges, rivers, and city walls of Pingjiang (Suzhou) during the Southern Song Dynasty.
Relief shown pictorially.
Available also through the Library of Congress Web site as a raster image.
Copy imperfect: Holes in the center, torn around edges.
Gift; William Gamble; 1938.
Prev. call#: G7824.S88 1450 .S7 Vault Shelf
Pre - 1600s maps, atlases and manuscripts
Ancient Maps from the Library of Congress. 13th -18th Century Maps.
During the Medieval period, European maps were dominated by religious views. All maps were, of course, drawn and illuminated by hand, which made the distribution of maps extremely limited. Medieval geography divided the world into three schematic parts: Asia, Europe, and Africa. Asia was depicted on top as the birthplace of Christ and the original site of the Garden of Eden. A T-O map (orbis terrarum, orb or circle of the lands; with the letter T inside an O), also known as an Isidoran map, is a type of early world map that represents the physical world as first described by the 7th-century scholar Isidore of Seville in his De Natura Rerum and later his Etymologiae. In this map format, Jerusalem was depicted at the center and east was oriented toward the map top. The design had great religious significance, with the “T” representing the central Christian symbol of the cross and placing Jerusalem at the center of the world. The “T” also separated the continents of the known world—Asia, Europe, and Africa—and the “O” that enclosed the entire image, represented the medieval idea of the world surrounded by water.