Piri Reis map - antediluvian map of Antarctica without ice
Tourists crossing the Dardanelles in the Canakkale region are usually so keen on tales of the armies of Xerxes and Alexander the Great who crossed the Dardanelles many centuries ago that they completely ignore the modest bust mounted on the European side of the strait next to the crossing. Few people know that the modest signature “Piri Flight” under the bust connects this place with one of the most intriguing mysteries of history.
In 1929, a map dated 1513 was discovered in one of the ancient palaces of Constantinople. The map might not have caused much interest if it were not for the image of both Americas (one of the earliest in history) and the signature of the Turkish admiral Piri Reis. Then, in the 1920s, in the wake of a national upsurge, it was especially important for the Turks to emphasize the role of the Turkish cartographer in creating one of the earliest maps of America. They began to study the map closely, as well as the history of its creation. And that’s what became known.
In 1513, the Turkish Fleet Admiral Piri Reis finished work on a large world map for his Bahriye geographic atlas. He himself did not travel so much, but, making a map, he used about 20 cartographic sources. Of these, eight maps belonged to the time of Ptolemy, some belonged to Alexander the Great, and one, as Piri Reis writes in his book “Seven Seas,” “was recently made by an unfaithful by the name of Colombo. And then the admiral says: “An infidel named Colombo, Genoese, discovered these lands. One book fell into the hands of the named Colombo, in which he read that on the edge of the West Sea, far in the West, there are coasts and islands. All kinds of metals and precious stones were found there. The aforementioned Colombo studied this book for a long time ... Colombo also learned about the natives' passion for glass jewelry from this book and took them with him to exchange for gold. ”
Let us leave aside Columbus and his mysterious book, although a direct indication that he knew where he was sailing is already amazing. Unfortunately, neither this book nor the map of Columbus has reached us. But a few sheets of the map from the Bahriye atlas miraculously survived and in 1811 were published in Europe. But then they were not given much importance. Only in 1956, when a Turkish naval officer donated maps to the American Marine Hydrographic Administration, did American military cartographers conduct a study to confirm or deny the seemingly impossible: the map depicted the coastline of Antarctica - 300 years before its discovery!
Soon, a report was received: “The statement that the bottom of the map shows Princess Martha Coast [of the] Queen Maud Land in Antarctica, as well as the Palmer Peninsula, is justified. We found this explanation the most logical and possibly correct. The geographic details shown at the bottom of the map are in excellent agreement with the seismic data made through the ice cap of the Swedish-British Antarctic expedition in 1949. This means that the coastline was mapped before it was covered with ice. The ice in this area is approximately 1.5 km thick. We have no idea how these data could be obtained with the estimated level of geographical knowledge in 1513. "
So the Piri Reis map began to reveal its secrets. Here are just a few of them.
The coastline of Antarctica is precisely indicated on the map!
Antarctica as a continent was discovered in 1818, but many cartographers, including Gerard Mercator, and until that time believed in the existence of the mainland in the extreme south and put on its maps its alleged shape. The Piri Reis map, as already mentioned, accurately displays the coastline of Antarctica - 300 years before its discovery!
But this is not the biggest mystery, especially since several ancient maps are known, including the Mercator map, which, as it turned out, depicts, and very accurately, Antarctica. Previously, they simply did not pay attention to this, because the “appearance” of the continent on the map can be greatly distorted depending on the cartographic projections used: it is not so easy to project the surface of the globe onto a plane. The fact that many ancient maps accurately reproduce not only Antarctica, but also other continents, became known after calculations made in the middle of the last century taking into account various projections that were used by old cartographers.
But the fact that the Piri Reis map shows the coast of Antarctica, not yet covered with ice, is difficult to comprehend! After all, the modern look of the coastline of the southern continent is set by a powerful ice cover that goes far beyond the boundaries of real land. It turns out that the Piri Reis used the sources, which were people who saw Antarctica before the glaciation? But this cannot be, since these people should have lived millions of years ago! The only accepted explanation of this fact by modern scholars is the theory of the periodic change of the Earth’s poles, according to which the last such change could have occurred about 6,000 years ago, and it was then that Antarctica began to again become covered with ice. That is, we are talking about seafarers who lived 6000 years ago and made maps according to which (like the map of Piri Reis) the modern ones were specified? Incredible ...
Map tied to Cairo
Interestingly, the Piri Reis map also gives an answer to the question of where these ancient sailors lived. (Or not mariners if they used other means of transportation?) The fact is that a professional cartographer, studying an ancient map and comparing it with modern ones, can determine what type of projection the map creator used. And when the map of Piri Reis was compared with the modern one, drawn up in a polar equal projection, they found almost complete similarity. In particular, the map of the Turkish admiral of the 16th century literally repeats the map compiled by the US Air Force during the Great Patriotic War.
But a map drawn in polar isometric projection should have a center. In the case of the American map, it was Cairo, where during the war there was an American military base. And from this, as the Chicago scientist Charles Hapgood, who thoroughly studied the Piri Reis map, showed that the center of the ancient map, which became the prototype of the admiral's map, was located exactly there, in Cairo, or its environs. That is, the ancient cartographers were the Egyptians who lived in Memphis, or their more ancient ancestors, who made this place a reference point.
The mathematical apparatus of cartographers
But whoever they were, they skillfully owned their craft. As soon as the researchers began to study the fragments of the map of the Turkish admiral that have reached us, the question arose about the authorship of its original source. The Piri Reis map is the so-called portulan, a sea map that allows you to build “lines between ports”, that is, to sail between port cities. In the 15th – 16th centuries, such maps were much more perfect than land maps, but, as one of the leading scientists in this field, A. E. Nordensheld noted, they did not develop. That is, maps of the 15th century were of the same quality as maps of the 14th century. This, from his point of view, indicates that the skill of the cartographers was not acquired, but borrowed, that is, in other words, they simply redrawn the older maps, which in itself is natural.
But what doesn’t fit into the head is the accuracy of the constructions and the mathematical apparatus, without which these constructions are simply impossible to complete. I will give just a few facts.
It is known that to build a geographical map, that is, display a sphere on a plane, it is necessary to know the size of this sphere, that is, the Earth. Even in ancient times, the circumference of the globe was able to measure Eratosthenes, but did so with a great error. Until the 15th century, no one specified these data. However, a thorough study of the coordinates of objects on the Piri map indicates that the dimensions of the Earth were taken into account without error, that is, the map makers had at their disposal more accurate information about our planet (not to mention the fact that they represented it as a ball). Researchers of the Turkish map also convincingly showed that the compilers of the mysterious ancient source knew trigonometry (the Reis map was drawn using plane geometry, where latitudes and longitudes are at right angles. But it was copied from a map with spherical trigonometry! Ancient cartographers not only knew that the Earth there is a ball, but they also calculated the length of the equator with an accuracy of about 100 km!) and cartographic projections that were not known to either Eratosthenes or even Ptolemy, but they theoretically could vatsya ancient maps are stored in the Library of Alexandria. That is, the primary source of the map is uniquely more ancient.
Both America are shown on the map.
The Piri Reis map is one of the first on which both Americas are indicated. It was compiled 21 years after the voyage of Columbus and the "official" discovery of America. And on it is indicated not only the exact coastline, but also rivers, and even the Andes. And this despite the fact that Columbus himself did not map America, having sailed only to the Caribbean Islands!
The mouths of some rivers, in particular Orinoco, are shown with a “mistake” on the map of Piri Reis: river deltas are not indicated. However, this does not speak more of a mistake, but of the expansion of deltas that has occurred over time, as was the case with the Tigris and Euphrates in Mesopotamia over the past 3,500 years.
Columbus knew where he was going
Piri Reis claimed that Columbus knew well where he was going, thanks to the book that fell into his hands. The fact that Columbus’s wife was the daughter of the Grand Master who had already changed his name by the Templar Order, which had significant archives of ancient books and maps, indicates a possible way of acquiring a mysterious book (to date, much has been written about the Templar fleet and the high probability of their regular voyages in America).
There are many facts that indirectly confirm that Columbus owned one of the cards that served as the source for the Piri Reis card. For example, Columbus did not stop the ships at night, as was customary for fear of flying into reefs in unknown waters, but walked under full sail, as if knowing for sure that there would be no obstacles. When the riot began on the ships due to the fact that the promised land did not appear, he managed to convince the sailors to suffer another 1000 miles and was not mistaken - exactly after 1000 miles the long-awaited coast appeared. Columbus brought with him a supply of glass jewelry, hoping to exchange them for gold with the Indians, as recommended in his book. Finally, each ship had a sealed bag with instructions on what to do if the ships lost sight of each other during a storm. In a word, the discoverer of America knew well that he was not the first.
Piri Reis map is not the only one
And the map of the Turkish admiral, for which Columbus’s maps were a source, was not one of a kind. If you set a goal, as Charles Hapgood did, to compare the images of Antarctica on several maps compiled before its “official” discovery, then there will be no doubt about the existence of a common source. Hapgood scrupulously compared the maps of Piri, Aranteus Finaus, Haji Ahmed and Mercator, created at different times and independently of each other, and determined that they all used the same unknown source, which allowed to depict the polar continent with the greatest reliability long before its discovery.
Most likely, we will no longer know for sure who and when created this source. But its existence, convincingly proved by researchers of the map of the Turkish admiral, testifies to the existence of an ancient civilization with a level of scientific knowledge comparable to modern, at least in the field of geography (the Piri map, as already mentioned, made it possible to clarify some modern maps). And this casts doubt on the hypothesis of a gradual linear progress of humanity in general and science in particular. One gets the feeling that the greatest knowledge of nature, as if obeying an unknown law, at a certain stage becomes available to mankind, then to be lost and ... to be reborn again when the time comes. And who knows how many discoveries the next find will conceal?