Comparing 16th Century Maps to Current Satellite Imagery

More

Remember life before GPS? Instead of to-the-minute maps and turn-by-turn directions to the tune of an Australian woman's voice, we relied on compasses and hand drawn maps.

In the 16th century, Georg Braun and Franz Hogenberg compiled Civitates Orbis Terrarum, a book of bird's-eye-view maps. From the Hebrew University of Jerusalem's and the Jewish National and University Library's Historic Cities site:

"This great city atlas, edited by Georg Braun and largely engraved by Franz Hogenberg, eventually contained 546 prospects, bird-eye views and map views of cities from all over the world. Braun (1541-1622), a cleric of Cologne, was the principal editor of the work, and was greatly assisted in his project by the close, and continued interest of Abraham Ortelius, whose Theatrum Orbis Terrarum of 1570 was, as a systematic and comprehensive collection of maps of uniform style, the first true atlas."

Take a look at how the Google Maps of the 1500s compares to today's version, in some of the world's biggest cities.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Leah Goldman is the list and rankings editor at Business Insider. She graduated from Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications where she studied magazine journalism.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

The Time JFK Called the Air Force to Complain About a 'Silly Bastard'

51 years ago, President John F. Kennedy made a very angry phone call.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Technology

Just In