New Edition of the Tabula Peutingeriana

The Tabula Peutingeriana is a UNESCO Memory of the World treasure which is the nearest thing to a Roman road-map still in existence.  Today I have relaunched the Tabula Peutingeriana Animated Edition with some major improvements to help both scholars and the general public understand this priceless roll now kept in a Vienna vault.

The biggest improvement to my digital reproduction at piggin.net/ta.svg will be visible when you start hovering a cursor or holding a finger on the yellow boxes which mark the mutations. In many cases, the lines now move incrementally so that you can compare the before and after states.

I hope readers will begin to perceive the Tabula more sympathetically, realizing that is is damaged rather than hopelessly old and wrong. Despite its idiosyncrasies, there is a more rationality to it than meets the eye.

The animations were technically complex to build with SMIL coding, but I decided the effort was worth it, because it can sometimes be quite difficult to spot the differences when simply flipping between two static views. On a slow computer you may find it takes a while for each of the animations to kick off, so it is prudent to hover in and out a couple of times to make sure you have seen all the steps. In Microsoft's Edge and Explorer browsers they do not seem to work at all. Use another browser.

The second big improvement here is the addition of a new database of annotations to the 62 emendations so far. I have launched this in the form of a blog, Restoring the Tabula Peutingeriana, to make it as easy as possible for readers to comment directly on every note. There has never been any central forum for these issues and I would be very glad if scholars would come here if they need, on the fly, to discuss the cases.

Other improvements include an extension of the chart's colored and emended area to Asia Minor as far as Samsat and a new link policy whereby all my charts will have very short, easily noted URLs such as piggin.net/ta.svg to make it easier to cite them. ta stands for Tabula Animated.

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