Mercator by Nicholas Crane
The Man Who Mapped the Planet

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 4 Critic Reviews



An enthralling biography of the man who created the first real map of the world and changed civilization

Born at the dawn of the age of discovery, Gerhard Mercator lived in an era of formidable intellectual and scientific advances. At the center of these developments were the cartographers who painstakingly pieced together the evidence to create ever more accurate pictures of the planet. Mercator was the greatest of all of them-a poor farm boy who attended one of Europe's top universities, was persecuted and imprisoned by the Inquisition, but survived to coin the term "atlas" and to produce the so-called projection for which he is known. Devoutly religious, yet gripped by Aristotelian science, Mercator struggled to reconcile the two, a conflict mirrored by the growing clash in Europe between humanism and the Church.

Mercator solved the dimensional riddle that had vexed cosmographers for so long: How could the three-dimensional globe be converted into a two-dimensional map while retaining true compass bearings? The projection revolutionized navigation and has become the most common worldview.

Nicholas Crane-a fellow geographer-has combined a keen eye for historical detail with a gift for vivid storytelling to produce a masterful biography of the man who mapped the planet.

About Nicholas Crane

See more books from this Author
Nicholas Crane, a geographer and adventurer, is the author of two acclaimed books, Two Degrees West and Clear Waters Rising. He lives in London.
Published January 2, 2003 by Henry Holt and Co.. 368 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Nature & Wildlife, Travel, Science & Math, Education & Reference, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Mercator

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Above all, Crane notes, Mercator’s method created maps that were “practical, accessible and could be precisely overlapped.” Lucid insights into the arcane processes of cartography, together with a meticulous map of the tenor of the times show humanist genius surviving and thriving amid the death ...

| Read Full Review of Mercator: The Man Who Mapped ...

The Guardian

See more reviews from this publication

When the Jet Propulsion Laboratory sent Mariner 8 and Mariner 9 to map Mars, they undertook their Martian cartography on a standard Mercator Projection and - naturally enough - the first book of maps describing the Red Planet was titled Atlas of Mars.

Jun 29 2002 | Read Full Review of Mercator: The Man Who Mapped ...

The Guardian

See more reviews from this publication

Mercator: The Man who Mapped the Planet Nicholas Crane Weidenfeld & Nicholson £20, pp348 When Gerard Mercator was born in 1512, the geography of the globe was sparsely known.

Jun 23 2002 | Read Full Review of Mercator: The Man Who Mapped ...

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

In the course of a life that nearly spanned the 16th century, that glorious age of exploration, a Flemish peasant's son, Gerard Mercator, helped shape the modern perception of the planet while seldom venturing beyond the confines of a corner of northwestern Europe.

| Read Full Review of Mercator: The Man Who Mapped ...

Reader Rating for Mercator

An aggregated and normalized score based on 10 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review