Keywords: Claudius Ptolemy, ancient geography, GIS analysis, historical cartography, georeferencing
Summary: In this paper, we use GIS analysis to produce a new digital reconstruction of the ancient India beyond the Ganges, Serike and Sinae, three peripheral regions from Claudius Ptolemy’s classical Geography, a seminal work that provides coordinates of more than 6,300 places once known to the celebrated scientist of antiquity. We discuss practical im-plications of Ptolemy’s criticism of a contemporary round mappa mundi, along with other relevant evidence, to advance a novel hypothesis that Sinae, where Ptolemy placed "fish-eating Aethiopians", actually belonged in Africa, instead of Asia. Our new Ptolemaic maps represent an attempt to rectify the ancient error and achieve clean separation of Sinae (Guinea) from its two Asian "neighbors". Multiple new identifications of Ptolemaic places are proposed. The results presented in the paper open up new potential avenues of explora-tion for archaeologists and contribute to improvement of understanding of cartographic her-itage, the ancients’ travels, and the state of geographical knowledge of remote regions of East Asia and West Africa in the time of Claudius Ptolemy.
GChK = Geschistschronologiekritik.
CHRONOLOGIEKRITIK ist auch die Kritik der Traditionellen Geschichte.