Christian Maps of the Holy Land Images and Meanings (Cultural Encounters in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, Book 28)

June 14, 2021
Christian Maps of the Holy Land Images and Meanings (Cultural Encounters in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, Book 28)

This book offers a way of reading maps of the Holy Land asvisual imagery with religious connotations. Through a corpus ofrepresentative examples created between the sixth and thenineteenth centuries, it studies the maps as iconic imagery of aniconic landscape and analyses their strategies to manifest thespiritual quality of the biblical topography, to support religioustenets, and to construct and preserve cultural memory. Maps of theHoly Land have thus far been studied with methodologies such ascartography and historical geography, while the main questionaddressed was the reliability of the maps as cartographicdocuments. Through another perspective and using the methodology ofvisual studies, this book reveals that maps of the Holy Landconstructed religious messages and were significant instrumentsthrough which different Christian cultures (Byzantine, Catholic,Protestant, and Greek Orthodox) shaped their religious identities.It does not seek to ascertain how the maps delivered geographicalinformation, but rather how they utilized the geographicalinformation in formulating religious and cultural values. Throughits examination of maps of the Holy Land, this book thus exploresboth Christian visual culture and Christian spirituality throughoutthe centuries.