Maps and Margins

Alfred Hiatt

in The Oxford Handbook of Medieval Literature in English

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780199229123
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

Maps and Margins

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  • Literary Studies (Early and Medieval)



This article examines the relation between maps and margins in medieval English literature. The concept of the margin is relevant to medieval maps and mapping in two ways. First, it was literally in the margins of manuscripts that maps first appeared in the Middle Ages, and second, the literal meaning of the Latin margo had, in classical and medieval formulations, topographical/cartographical applications. This article describes what was shown at the margins of medieval maps and how these margin maps correspond with literary descriptions of travel to and encounter with marginal spaces and peoples.

Keywords: maps; margins; English literature; manuscripts; margo; travel; literary descriptions

Article.  11059 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (Early and Medieval)

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