Cartographic Heritage into the Digital

Cartoheritage on the Web

5711.4 - The Second Life of the General map of the Russian Empire

Wednesday, July 5
5:10 PM - 5:30 PM
Location: Hoover

General Map of the Russian Empire of 1734 (Imperii Russici Tabula Generalis quoad fieri potuit assuratissime descripta operae studio Joannis Kyrilow Supremi Senatus Imperii Russici privy Secretarii. Petropoli Anno MDCCXXXIV) was created under the guidance of Ivan Kirilov. This was the first general map of the Russian state made on the scientific basis using materials of the first instrumental surveys and the latest data from recent expeditions of the 18th century.

Russian surveyors collected information for the map creation over ten years. Kirillov has been working over the map during the period from July 1731 on April 1732.

The map was compiled in Latin, it was issued about 1,000 copies. Not more than two dozen of the copies of the original map has been remained by now in the collections of various libraries and archives all over the world.

The appearance of the General map of the Russian Empire, which had a mathematical basis, was an outstanding event in the scientific life of the first half of the XVIII century. This is evidenced by the great interest that was shown in this map from the representatives of both Russian and foreign science.

The map belongs to the cartographic heritage category and was reproduced in the literature on the history of cartography repeatedly. However, practice shows that the modern young generation is not familiar with the map and its contents. That is why the Russian State Library in cooperation with the private publishing house Media Map Group undertook a multimedia reprint of the map.

The publication consists of two parts. The first part is a facsimile reproduction of the original map stored in the library. The second part is actually a multimedia map that contains several layers: the history of the map, the role of Ivan Kirilov in the creation of the map, geographic analysis of the content of the map and its design, the state of the Russian cartography at the beginning of the 18th century, the impact of Peter the Great on cartography development in Russia. Each layer of the multi-media part is provided with a certain amount of Audiolabels containing information about the characteristics of this map. Audiolabels’ content is read with a special media guide. The document is created in three languages - Russian, English, Chinese. Target audience - young people and students.

The paper goes to present the results of the project.

Liudmila N. Zinchuk

Map Curator, Head of Map Department
Russian State Library

Graduated from the Moscow State University in 1975, Faculty of Geography. Works in the Map Department of the Russian State Library for over 40 years. Main field of researches: history of cartography, map bibliography, cartography. The author of more than twenty scientific publications. Was one of the organizers of the International Conference on the History of Cartography in 2011 in Moscow (ICHC2011).


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Mátyás Gede

Senior lecturer
Eötvös Loránd University

Mátyás Gede is a senior lecturer at the Department of Cartography and Geoinformatics, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. His main fields of interest are globe digitising, virtual globes, webcartography and map projections. He is the vice chair of the ICA Commission on Cartographic Heritage into the Digital.


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5711.4 - The Second Life of the General map of the Russian Empire


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