The Times Atlas of World History

The Times Atlas of World History

Infobox Book |
name = The Times Atlas of World History

author = Geoffrey Barraclough
country = London
language = English
publisher = Times Books Limited
release_date =
media_type = Print (Hardback)
genre = Atlas, History
pages = 360
isbn = ISBN 0-8437-1125-6

"The Times Atlas of World History" contains large full color plates and commentary on each map or set of maps. Includes approximately 600 maps covering the date span of 3000 BCE to 1975.

Dimensions: 1.2 x 11.0 x 14.8 inches

Book Content

It contains seven sections:
* The world of early man
* The first civilisations
* The classical civilisations of Eurasia
* The world of divided regions
* The world of emerging West
* The age of European dominance
* The age of global civilisation

The book is prefaced with an eleven page "World Chronology" which is quick-view timeline across general geographic regions. It is suffixed with a Glossary (38 pages), helpful in cross-referencing names and places, and an index (26 pages).

Each section is further divided into given subjects and contain between one and nine maps, charts to show economic, demographic, manufactures, agricultural output, drug trade and other data as needed. Occasionally illustrations are included on a topic.

In the introduction to the first edition, Geoffrey Barraclough notes that the desire of "The Atlas" was to provide a history based on the viewpoint of its creators, hence the spread of Islam, for example, is centred at Mecca, as might have been the view of the seventh century Arabs.

Publication Information

"The Atlas", first published in 1978 in London, UK, sold many millions of copies in many languages. Its stated aim was to describe the major processes and events of world history across a broad canvas and omit tiny details of, say, ruling families, minor battles etc. It wished to give a dynamic view of population migrations, economic developments such as agriculture and industrialisation, wars, the spread of religions and political ideologies.

It was created by Barry Winkleman, the Publishing Director of "The Times", and Geoffrey Barraclough, Chichele Professor of Modern History at Oxford University. They assembled a team of some 80 leading historians from around the world who wrote the texts and provided the map sources and recruited a team of illustrators and designers to create over 500 maps that were not primarily cartographers but illustrators.Fact|date=February 2007 The map design was the work of Peter Sullivan, an art teacher and principal artist at "The Sunday Times" newspaper in London. The illustration team was from Product Support Graphics, a large design group once part of Rolls Royce Motors in Derby, England,Fact|date=February 2007 who used technical illustration technology to create projections.

Subsequent editions were edited by Norman Stone, also a professor at Oxford and Geoffrey Parker, a Professor at Yale.

"The Atlas" was the first work of its kind to be published in ChineseFact|date=February 2007, in Beijing, in 1981, by The Joint Publishing Company, and was a major success in French (Encyclopedie Universalis), German (Droemer Verlag), Italian (Mondadori), Hungarian (Akademiai Kiado), Serbo-Croat (Cankarjeva Zalozba)and in many other languages. In the UK it was published by Times Books Limited and in the USA, where it had a huge success, by Hammond, Inc.


Its critical reception was enthusiastic. For example Lord Blake, Provost of the Queen's College, Oxford, called it a "splendid book" (source: inside jacket comment) and the Whole Earth Catalog called it "the most engrossing new reference book in decades."Fact|date=February 2007

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