March 25, 2017

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Map of Mystery

Originally published July 18, 2007

image from an unknown contributor

This image is a mystery. Most embarassingly, I have lost the indentification of the person who submitted it, but also there is the mystery of the Greek map of the Moon. The depiction of the Moon is familiar but I have been unaware of the existence of a lunar map with names (a very few at that) in Greek. I wonder how many maps of the Moon exist with nomenclature annotated in languages other than English, Russian, French, Italian and German (ones in my collection). And Chinese. I assume that there are lunar maps in Japanese, but I have never seen any. And what of not modern maps, but older ones. The first maps with nomenclature were done in the 1600s and used Latin. Maps in German (18th century), English (19th & 20th centuries), and Russian (20th century) are common. But are there old maps from the 17th or 18th centuries in Chinese, Japanese or other Asian languages? If so, did they employ names different from those that evolved in the West? And with Japan (next month) and China and India sending probes to the Moon in the next 12 months, will those nations make new lunar maps in their languages, and will they want to add new names to commemorate their lunar successes?

Chuck Wood

UPDATE: Mysteries Solved! Alexandros Diamantis sent this email:

I sent you this image on May 25 2007. As you can see in the text, the map is designed by Aris Mylonas and the photo is mine from that morning when I was excited with the moon, I put down on the floor the map, I added my imagination - two miniatures instruments of my collection and real flowers from my garden. And immediately I sent it to you. I think the next human home will be the Moon.

Here is a view of the entire map.

Yesterday's LPOD: An Author Where He Belongs

Tomorrow's LPOD: An Oblique View of Prom Laplace


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