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Ancient Chinese Maps on Display in Hong Kong



Ancient Chinese Maps on Display in Hong Kong

HONG KONG (July 28) XINHUA - Well-known ancient Chinese maps which
date as early as 860 years ago are being displayed in a unique
exhibition which opened here today.

The exhibition named "History Through Maps" in the Hong Kong Museum is
jointly organized by the Hong Kong Provisional Urban Council (PUC) and
the National Library of China.

Among the over 70 ancient maps on display are 29 pieces from extremely
rare cartographic documents on loan from the National Library, more
than 30 from the collection of famed Hong Kong collector Tam
Siu-cheung and the rest are lent by the Hong Kong University, Hong
Kong Museum of Art, Public Records Office and the Hong Kong Museum of
History.

The exhibits are of seven categories -- world maps and general maps of
China, maps of administrative divisions, maps of metropolis, maps of
scenic spots, maps of military significance, maps of economic
undertakings and maps of Guangdong.

Among those on display are the impressive Pingjiangtu, which is the
first and largest map of a Chinese city, and famous Yujitu dated 1136
AD, which is the oldest map using lattice grid with scale.

Experts said that most traditional ancient Chinese maps were presented
either pictorially in the style of Chinese landscape painting with
little concern of scale, or more scientifically in the form of
Jilihuafang with the land drawn to a grid scale of a certain li (a
Chinese unit of length which is approximately equivalent to 0.5
kilometers) to each division.

The style was brought to Europe via Arabia about 700 years ago by
traders and commissioners, which directly prompted the breakthroughs
in European cartography. Enditem

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