During the dark Middle Ages, map making came to a standstill in Europe.At the same time, science flourished in the Arabian world. In 1154 an Arabian geographer, Al-Idrisi, had made a world map. Traveling became a widespread habit due to an increase in trade relations across regional borders. At the same time, measuring instruments and printing techniques were improved.The invention of the moveable type around the year 1450 revolutionized the printing process.

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The earliest known world maps date from the 6th century BC created by a Greek named Anaximander.

In the second century BC, another Greek, Eratosthenes, created a map showing the world as far as England, North Africa and India.

First Publication: May 2001 Latest Update: March 2014 Maybe maps were in use much earlier in China.

Archaeologists found maps drawn on silk dating back to 250 BC.

The scholar Claudius Ptolemaeus (Ptolemy) in Alexandria, Egypt, had created a series of maps around 150 AD.

His maps were the first known to use conic projections.

A few of his maps were saved by Arabian scholars and were rediscovered and reprinted in Europe in the 15th century.

Ptolomy's maps show large parts of Europe, the Mediterranean Sea with Northern Africa and large parts of Asia with an astonishing accuracy.

It consisted of 12 separate panels and showed the newly discovered continent.