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Dicaearchus' Map

Dicaearchus lived around 300 BC. He was a follower of the Greek philosopher Aristotle. Aristotle was interested in all sorts of questions about the way the world works. Dicaearchus concentrated on geometry and geography.

Dicaearchus made a map using two reference lines. One reference line went through the city of Rhodes and the Pillars of Hercules. Today the Pillars of Hercules are called Gibraltar. They are the place where the Mediterranean enters the Atlantic Ocean. Rhodes is a city on an island between Greece and Turkey. Dicaearchus chose this line because it divided the parts of the world that he knew about in half. It was quite far north of the equator: now we call it 36° North latitude. The other reference line went from north to south, also through Rhodes.

Dicaearchus' map might have looked something like this:


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