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The Fourth Part of the World: The Race to the Ends of the Earth, and the Epic Story of the Map That Gave America Its Name

Average Rating 3.5
( 57 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(14)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(13)

2 Star

(8)

1 Star

(8)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 57 Customer Reviews
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  • Posted February 22, 2010

    A wealth of research

    Mr. Lester can research. Mr. Lester can write. What he produced was an extremely interesting voyage of discovery into the evolution of medieval map making and the slow progress of human understanding about the planet. Along the way he discussed events that shaped our current situation. I found the first three-fourths of this book fascinating, the last quarter a little ponderous. Overall this work was well worth the effort to get through. The idea that one could live on this planet and have no understanding of what it consisted of, that you could have maps which paralleled human knowledge with enormous voids only characterized as terra incognita, was mind-boggling. Mr. Lester should be commended for a behemoth work, a terrific journey, and an education read.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 8, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    What an Adventure!

    Excellent book! Well written and presented, the author does a great job of bringing together many aspects of history with how essentail it is for people to understand and know their geography. Lester gives those of us from the Fourth Part of the World much to ponder about how we got on the map.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 7, 2010

    Toby Lester Expands Our American Identity

    Toby Lester has made a milestone contribution by explaining the Waldseemuller Globe Wall Map. It unfolds and connects the Greek roots and Renaissance rise of science to explain how humanity's understanding of its cosmos had reached the limits of knowledge. The challenge resulted in the first, modern projection of earth-from-space. Yes, the naming of America unlocks a new dimension of learning with the technology of the printing press. Lester's soft prose language tells a wonderful story to engage and explain this unkown root of how the birth of the word "America" in planetary science results from humanity's spirit of ingenuity. His work provides the bibliography for the hemisphere to embrace the America500 Birthday Extravganza 2007-12. Read this book! Share your passion. Celebrate America! Know Your Story! It starts with the question "Who Named America" to engage residents in the local conversation of history and open local windows to worldwide learning. Riccardo Gaudino, Historian - National Director Organizing Committee

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 20, 2010

    A fascinating view of the world from the viewpoint historical figures in the middle ages.

    This book was eye-opening to me about the way the world was viewed by various historical figures. The maps of the day influenced that view whether they were accurate or not. Some maps tried to use some logic such as rudimentary longitude and latitude to place countries in their proper place in the world. Others made no pretense at logic and simply put countries where they thought they were regardless of size or proportion. The maps that were accepted by the intellects of the day influenced other maps and views. The map that named America was accepted by the intellects of the day and was printed using a printing press so that it was widely distributed for that era. Whether naming America was correct or not, other map makers soon followed suit. The story of how this map came to be and what influenced it is a fascinating story.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 27, 2010

    A good read for those who like exploration and maps

    Informative book about how European world view evolved to include the New World. Explains why Columbus died thinking he had reached the Indies, and not the new American continents between. The hardcover book is nice to hold, with quality type and paper.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2013

    A page-turner!

    This was fascinating to read, and I read it quickly.
    Afterwards, I even traveled to Washington, DC to see that huge first map to use the word "America." I recommend not only this book but also a visit to the Library of Congress to see the mint condition 500+ years-old map.
    This book tells a vast, epic and exciting story very well.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 57 Customer Reviews
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