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World Atlas

World Atlas
Description:World Atlas depicting World Countries, Capitals and International boundaries.
Click to view even  large World Atlas  

The origin of the word World Atlas in itself is no less interesting than the traditional meaning which has come to denote a collection of maps, providing an encyclopedic wealth of information on the land, people and cultures in different parts of the world. One of the legends in this relation state, that the land of Mauritania was once ruled by King Atlas, a great philosopher, mathematician and astronomer who created the first celestial globe. In 1595, the great cartographer Gerardus Mercator first called his collection of maps as an "Atlas" in honor of this legendary king Atlas.

Another even more popular legend speaks about the Greek mythological character of Atlas, the son of Titan Iapetus and Oceanid Asia, who was condemned to bear the burden of celestial sphere on his shoulders by the Greek God of Zeus. The legend goes on to state that Heracles approached Atlas, holding the world, and tempted him into collecting the apples of Hesperides by offering a temporary reprieve from the burden of heavens in the meantime. Atlas readily agreed to the same but on returning with the apples he wished to escape his condemned fate, but, understanding his intent well, Heracles used a little tact to leave Atlas holding up the world once again.

Atlas of the World

The world atlas, even though seen as nothing but a well-designed and bulky tome sitting on library shelves, has had a very vivid history. Here are some of the interesting bits:
  • The term 'atlas' comes from the legend of King Atlas of Mauretania, who is credited with the development of the first globe.
  • The first printed atlas was produced in AD 150 by Claudius Ptolemy. It had 27 hand-drawn maps.
  • Cartography, the art of making maps, is itself far, far more ancient than the atlas: Some crudely-made maps are available from the 7th millennium BCE!
Interesting, but . . . I can't carry an atlas around!
We agree, and this is precisely what we realized some time back. But for us, maps were more than a profession, more than even passion - they were a way of life! So we sat down and applied ourselves.

The result was World Atlas, our free iPad app!

What is so special about World Atlas app?
It's essentially a world atlas, BUT:
  • It's free!
  • Works offline.
  • Individual maps for each country.
  • Provides information on flags, capitals, religions, legislatures - you name it!
  • Make a custom search for more specific information.
Go now to the iTunes store and give it a try!
Yet another version of the same legend says that Heracles instead erected the two Pillars of Hercules, to end the punishment of Atlas, holding world forever. It is suggested that historically, Antonia Lafreri was the first person to associate a collection of maps with the Greek legend of Titan Atlas and from 16th century onwards, any cartographic collection came to be known as Atlas. Commonly, the globe depicted in the caricatures of Atlas holding up the world is mistaken as earth in what is actually supposed to be the celestial sphere.

Atlas of World

The first printed Atlas of the world was from the geographical texts of legendary geographer Claudius Ptolemy circa 150 A.D. which includes a set of 27 maps drawn by Ptolemy himself. There is some confusion in this relation about whether these world atlas maps are reproductions of the maps contained in the original manuscripts or are the world map taken from earlier reproductions of the original maps by some medieval geographers.

The first edition of this Atlas of world was published in 1477 in Bologna and some people believe that in this Atlas, world maps might have been engraved by Taddeo Crivelli. In any case, however, this antiquarian world maps Atlas was completely out of date with the later Portuguese and Spanish discoveries. Other major shortcomings of this antique world map included traditional misconceptions related to the world geography, a striking example of which can be found in the depiction of west-east orientation of Scotland in the maps of British Isles.

Slowly, however, cartographers started introducing corrections in the further reproductions of any classical atlas, world globe, map, etc. A good example of this can be found in an edition of 'Geographia' a celebrated work of Ptolemy, published in 1513, where Martin Waldseemuller had included 20 additional maps of a relatively modern origin.

The process of integrating updated information in older maps continued unabated to make a large world Atlas, some peculiar problems arose for the students of maps. The problem arose due to the apparent lack of uniformity of sizes of various maps which made the rolling and unrolling of large maps very difficult and handling maps in general became a contentious issue. It was the Flemish map maker Abraham Ortelius who came up with a solution by publishing his historical work 'Theatrum Orbis Terrarum' with 53 uniform-sized map sheets in his atlas map of the world.

The World Atlas

A world Atlas with uniform sized maps was a major breakthrough for cartographers and geographers alike. It was only much later that an exact world atlas with latitude and longitude was drawn up although world atlas with north, south, east, and west degrees were being drawn up earlier but with far less accuracy. For all, the world Atlas was a major creative achievement in the progress of human civilization which symbolizes the undying spirit of adventure, exploration and intellectual growth.

Atlas World Map

In Map of World Atlas, encyclopedia of the geographical, political and cultural information can be found which serves a number of purposes. Atlas map also include a large number of other maps which focus on a specific region. These atlas maps provide detailed information on the subject.

Nowadays, free atlases are easily available on the World Wide Web which can be a great source of information for anyone interested enough. With a careful study of Atlas, world geography can easily be explored by anyone. offers, World traveler map, Geographic world map, World political map, world travel map and large world map, in addition to all country and city maps. We also undertake orders for framed world map in standard sizes and dimensions.

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