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Symposium: Mapping the World, the Belgian contribution

From 11 October 2021
to 14 October 2021

This event has passed.


  • [11 October 2021: reception]
  • 12 October 2021 – 09:00
  • 13 October 2021 – 09:30
  • 14 October 2021 – 09:30




100€ – 350€


The 38th IMCoS International Symposium will highlight the early Belgian contributions to the development of cartography worldwide. These include the introduction of triangulation techniques (Frisius, van Deventer), first world atlases (Ortelius, Mercator) and the first navigation map to use the Mercator projection.

This extraordinary history will include the Golden Age of Flemish Cartography as well as masterpieces of the later periods, from Michiel van Langren’s work on selenography (17th century) to Count Ferraris’ Austrian mapping activities (18th century), and Vandermaelen’s Map library (19th century).

The visits to Belgian collections will also reveal cartographic works from Dutch, Italian, French and English origins.

This symposium is planned as a three-day event, comprising speaker presentations at KBR and visits to collections/institutions holding remarkable map collections: the State Archives of Belgium, the Art & History Museum and the Royal Army Museum.

The Symposium will be open to cartographers, geographers, historians, map collectors, land surveyors, curators and everyone with an interest in maps.


This image of the Pythagorean tetrad stems from an early ninth-century manuscript (ms. 9311-19) that contains, among other texts, Isidore of Seville’s De natura rerum. It provides an excellent summary of all topics which will be presented and discussed during the conference:

  • the earth element stands for terrestrial cartography
  • the air stands for celestial cartography
  • the water stands for the portolans and sea charts,
  • the fire stands for maps related to warfare and fortification plans



View the preliminary programme and the list of speakers on the event website.



The full registration fee is 350 EUR.

A one-day ticket costs 100 EUR. This ticket does not include the reception or the dinner; they can be purchased separately.

View all prices here

Register now




  • KBR
  • Brussels Map Circle (BIMCC)