A mammoth tusk, thousand year old rock carvings in the Italian countryside, Martin Waldseemüller's "American Birth Certificate," Google Maps—all represent leaps in the history of mapmaking, one of humankind's oldest (and most successful) endeavors to understand the world around us.
All of them—alongside countless others—are the focus of one of the more delightful books of 2018 and this week's selection for Just Booked (our twice-a-month series highlighting gorgeous new coffee table books related to travel), Theater of the World: The Maps That Made History by Thomas Reinertsen Berg.
The book gets its name from Flemish cartographer Abraham Ortelius's atlas Theatrum orbis terrarum (Theater of the World). Like Ortelius, Berg has built upon generations of work and woven it into a digestible dive into everything from cartography to illustration and mapmaking. While not as hefty as some of our past selections, this mid-size book may be the most likely to cause you to lose a guest in its pages.