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Tianlong Jiao. Mapping Ming China’s Maritime World

Until 23 June, the Hong Kong Maritime Museum (HKMM) is hosting the exhibition ‘Mapping Ming China’s Maritime World—The Selden Map and Other Treasures from the University of Oxford’. Presented in collaboration with University of Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries and the Ashmolean Museum, the highlight of this exhibition is the newly restored Selden Map of China (Fig. 1), an intriguing late Ming dynasty map that has lately attracted much academic attention. The primary importance of this map is that it offers a rare opportunity to re-evaluate the maritime dimensions of the late Ming empire and the history of Chinese cartography. Collections from HKMM and items from local map collector K. L. Tam are also featured. This essay examines how maps reflect different world views prevalent in the late Ming dynasty by discussing some of the works shown in this exhibition. 

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