The Age of Reason


Although most thinkers of the Enlightenment were certainly religious, scientific arguments of this period were defined by reason, rather than scripture. These maps show the gradual transformation from religious domination to academic discussion.

Nova et Accvratissima Totivs Terrarvm Orbis Tabvla. Auctore Ioanne Blaev.

Joan Blaeu, Amsterdam, 1662

This Dutch masterpiece shows us the western and eastern hemispheres, with highly defined borders. But above the map itself is an allegorical representation of the heavens. In the middle we see Apollo, the sun god, surrounded by Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, each rainbow ring representing a planet’s orbit around the sun. Beneath the hemispheres are allegorical seasons, Flora, Ceres, Bacchus, and Boreas.

Creatio Universi

Tigur Melchior Fuesslinus, Johannes Andreas Pfeffel, and Friderich Johannes, Augsburg, 1720