Piri Reis Map

The Piri Reis map is an ancient world map compiled in 1513 by the Ottoman admiral and cartographer Piri Reis. The map is notable for its accuracy and detail, particularly in its representation of the western coast of Africa, the eastern coast of South America, and the northern coast of Antarctica.

In 1929 a clique of historians at the Topkapi Palace within Istanbul, Turkey, found a rather captivating discovery. Inscribed on a gazelle skin dated back to 1513 they had uncovered a portion of a remarkable map. This chart depicted sections of the Atlantic Ocean, the Americas, and Antarctica in flawless detail. The puzzling aspect was that it had been constructed several years after Christopher Columbus’ discovery and 300 years before Antarctica was even thought about. Many speculations have been devised about how the map creator acquired his extensive knowledge. Did extraterrestrials or an advanced race give the cartographer his source of information to create the chart?

Named after its creator, the map was referred to as Piri Reis who was a famous Turkish Fleet admiral in the sixteenth century. The word ‘Reis’ means Admiral, and his real name was Hacı Ahmed Muhiddin Piri. Piri Reis had a passion for cartography and with his rank came certain special privileges such as access to the Imperial Library of Constantinople. The Admiral acknowledges compiling the Piri Reis map from several different charts which all dated back to 4th century BC, including older maps and charts that had been collected by the Ottoman Empire over the years. It is believed that Piri Reis consulted with scholars and experts in various fields, including geography and astronomy, to create the map. He enjoyed a prominent military career until 1554, when he was almost 90 years old, but he was then beheaded by the Ottoman Sultan for insubordination.

The Piri Reis map is only a small portion of the original, and clearly shows the Atlantic Ocean to the west coast of Africa, the eastern coast of South America, and the northern coastline of Antarctica in perfectly detailed. The map was a ‘portolan’ map so instead of being drawn with vertical longitude and horizontal latitude lines as is found on modern maps. It was drawn using a series of circles which were used to map sailing routes guiding ships from one port to another. These types of maps were quite prevalent back then, and according to history experts, Columbus was said to have used one to navigate to the Americas.

The Piri Reis map is a part of a larger collection of maps and charts known as the Piri Reis Atlas, which consists of 18 maps in total. The maps in the atlas cover a wide range of geographical regions, including the Mediterranean, the Black Sea, the coast of Brazil, and the western coast of Africa. In addition to its geographical accuracy, the Piri Reis map is also notable for its artistic and aesthetic qualities. The map is decorated with intricate patterns and designs, as well as illustrations of ships, sea monsters, and other maritime motifs.

Numerous Piri Reis Map connoisseurs conclude that the geographical and mathematical expertise needed to generate the map was far beyond the reach of cartographers during the sixteenth centuries and before. In the 1960s, even the United States Air Force found the map so precise they used it to substitute inaccurate data on their own charts. Some speculate the map could have only been completed using aerial surveillance and propose that extraterrestrials charted the planet millennia ago. They could have either left it behind or deliberately gave it to Mankind.

The map’s precise depiction of the Antarctic geography seems to be the most compelling feature. Antarctica wasn’t discovered until the year 1818, while the continent’s land wasn’t first mapped until 1949 which needed modern equipment to peer beneath the mile deep ice cap to view the land underneath. A provoking theory states that an advanced ancient race using now lost technology, was able to meticulously document details of the continent before it was veiled in ice.

Despite its enduring popularity and fame, the Piri Reis map has not been without controversy. Some have challenged its authenticity, arguing that it is a forgery or a hoax. However, the map has undergone extensive analysis and examination by scholars and experts, and there is a general consensus that it is a genuine historical document.

The Piri Reis map is still a true and mysterious phenomenon to this day. It reputedly contains attributes no European or let alone human could have known in the sixteenth century. So as the argument continues, was Piri Reis a truly skilled cartographer well ahead in his time? Or was he lucky enough to view maps and charts created by an advanced race which inhabited this planet many millennia ago?

The Piri Reis map remains an important and fascinating artifact of the Age of Exploration and a testament to the ingenuity and skill of its creator, Piri Reis. It continues to be studied and admired by historians and cartographers today.