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The Christian Topography of Cosmas, an Egyptian Monk offers a unique lens into an intriguing historical perspective. Cosmas Indicopleustes, or “Indian Voyager,” was a monk and an experienced traveler. He was one of the first Christian writers to present his geographical findings in precise writings, diagrams, and maps. Cosmas’ accounts bring to light history and geography that was otherwise lost to the world, but he is perhaps best known for his adamant insistence that the world is flat, and that the heavens border it like a box. Cosmas argued against secular scholars and Christians alike, attempting to discredit the growing case that the world is spherical by calling the notion “pagan,” and drawing from his own original interpretations of Scripture. Despite this humorous and glaring error, The Christian Topography remains a valuable piece of historical scholarship, providing accounts of his voyages across the Red Sea and some of the earliest maps of the world. While Cosmas’ interpretations have been rightly criticized, his documentation of his travels remains a landmark of geographical scholarship.
With Logos Bible Software, this valuable volume is enhanced by cutting-edge research tools. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Powerful searches help you find exactly what you’re looking for. Tablet and mobile apps let you take the discussion with you. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
The Christian Topography is one of the prodigies of literature.
—from the preface by J. W. McCrindle
. . . mingled with the practical knowledge of the traveller.
—Edward Gibbon, author, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
. . . The Christian Topography must always be remarkable. It is one of the earliest important essays in scientific or strictly theoretic geography, within the Christian era, written by a Christian thinker.
—Raymond Beazley, author, The Dawn of Modern Geography
Cosmas Indicopleustes (also known as Cosmas the Monk) was a sixth-century traveler. Cosmas made multiple voyages from Rome to India during the reign of Emperor Justinian. His work, The Christian Topography, reflects his wealth of traveling experience and the worldview that the earth is flat, and also contained some of the earliest maps of the world.