Cultural History

Economic and Social History

Political History


Geographical Culture and History of Cartography

The Programme belongs to the broader domain of cultural history and the history of ideas. It attempts to explore the role of geographical representations as social, political and cultural constructs and is devoted to the historical study of perceptions and representations of space -textual and graphic- and their implications on cultural, social and political history. 

The programme focuses chiefly on the history of perceptions and representations of Greece and their impact on the construction of Modern Greek identities. Within the programme's framework, specific independent research projects have been developed over the last 15 years, either sponsored by various national and international institutions (public and private) or in collaboration with broader national and international networks. Their fields of inquiry are related to:

  • the building of local and regional territorial identities
  • early modern maritime cartography
  • concepts of insularity and representations of insular space
  • sacred topography and its social and cultural functions
  • antiquarian and patriotic interest in historical space
  • the formation of Greek national territoriality

The research programme has organized post-graduate seminars in Greece and abroad; it sustains a database of the related material (; it publishes books and articles on a variety of topics, such as the history of perceptions of Greek space, the history of Greek cartography and the cartography of Greece, travel literature and geography, studies on the perception and functions of historical space and the history of Greek archaeology. Several scholars, senior and junior, have collaborated on the programme, as well as post-graduate students and postdoctoral researchers.


George Tolias, Research Director, Supervisor

Researcher: Dimitris Loupis, Research Collaborator


2007 Island Cartographies: Knowledge and Power / Cartographie des iles. Enjeux de savoir - enjeux de pouvoir, Ermoupolis, Syros, 16-17 July. Within the framework of Ramses2 activities and the Ermoupolis seminars.

Following Pausanias: The Quest for Greek Antiquity, International Colloquium, organized by the National Hellenic Research Foundation and the Gennadius Library / The American School for Classical Studies.

1999  18th International Conference on the History of Cartography, Athens, National Hellenic Research Foundation, Gennadius Library, 11-17 July 1999. Organized by the Society for Hellenic Cartography, the Institute for Neohellenic Research / NHRF and Imago Mundi Ltd.
1996 The Image of Greece in Western Europe, 17th-19th century: New Approaches, International workshop organized by the Institute for Neohellenic Research / NHRF, Athens, April 23.

External Funded Projects:

2006-11 History ofCartographyofGreece. Funded by the Samourkas Foundation.

IslandCartographies. Funded by the European Union, within the framework of the Ramses2 Network of Excellence .

2005-07 Following Pausanias: The Quest for Greek Antiquity. Funded by the European Union, and the Greek Ministry of Development and Ministry of Culture.
2005-07 Greek Cartography: The Documents (15th-19th Centuries). Funded by the European Union - European Regional Development Fund and the Greek Public Domain (3rd CSF 2000-2006), within the framework of 'PANDEKTIS: A Digital Thesaurus of Primary Sources for Greek History and Culture'.
1998-99 Mediterranean Cartography. Funded by the I. F. Kostopoulos Foundation.
1997-99 The Greek Portolan Charts. Funded by the European Union, the General Secretariat of Research and Technology and Olkos Publications.

European and International Networks:

2010-2014 Member of the four-year international PhD project in the humanities, The Traditions of Mediterranean Humanism and the Challenges of Our Times: The Frontiers of Humanity. Conducted by the Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies 'Artes Liberales' of the University of Warsaw (project director: Prof. Jerzy Axer). The project has been designed by an international team of 36 scholars and is devoted to the interdisciplinary exploration of the traditions of Mediterranean humanism faced with the challenges of our contemporary world.
2009-2013 Member of the Bibliotheque Nationale de France Projet d'Anville. Coordinator: Catherine Hoffman. The project is devoted to the study and publication of the work of J. B. Bourguignon d'Anville, a leading humanist geographer of the French Enlightenment.
2007-2010 Member of Ramses2: Euro-Mediterranean Research Network of Excellence [Ramses2. Reseau euro-mediterraneen des centres de recherche en sciences humaines sur l'aire mediterraneenne] (2005-2008). Work Package I.1: Memoires en Mediterranee, entre histoire et politique. Ramses² groups 30 research institutions and different Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (France) research units within the Euro-Mediterranean area. It is funded by the European Commission within the framework of the European Research Policy (FP6). The Ramses² Network is coordinated by the CNRS.
2000-2002 Member of the Project CULTUCADSES, financed by the European Union (FESR), Intereg II (Italia-Slovenia) in collaboration with the Marco Polo System. Coordinators: Paolo Costa and Giandomenico Romanelli. Member of the scientific committee of the Museo Correr's  sub-project "Navigare e descrivere", coordinated by Camillo Tonini and Piero Lucchi.
1999-2004 Member of The History of Cartography Project. Coordinator: David Woodward, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Member of the project for the preparation of volume three, Cartography in the European Renaissance.


Main Publications

  • Mapping Greece, 1420-1800: Maps in the Margarita Samourkas Collection. Catalogue of maps compiled by Leonora Navari, Oak Knoll Press, ‘t Goy-Houten: HES & DE GRAAF Publishers and National Hellenic Research Foundation, New Castle, Delaware - Athens 2012, 546 σελ.
  • “An Inconsiderate Love for the Arts: the Spoils of Greek Antiquities, 1770-1820”, in Zainab Bahrani, Zeynep Celik, Edhem Eldem (eds.), The Scramble for the Past. Archaeology in the Ottoman Empire, 1750-1920, Istanbul, 2011, σελ. 71-94.
  • Challenged Territories: Cartographies of Greece and the Levant during the Ottoman Era, Analecta Isisiana CXII, Istanbul, Isis Press, 2010, 255 σελ.
  • “Maps Printed in Greek during the Age of Enlightenment, 1665-1820”, e-Perimetron 5:1(2010), σελ. 1-48.
  • «Glose, contemplation, et méditation: histoire éditoriale et fonctions du Parergon d’Abraham Ortelius (1579-1624)», in Frank Lestrigant (ed.), Les méditations cosmographiques à la renaissance, Cahiers L.V. Saulnier 26, Paris, Presses Universitaires de Paris Sorbonne, 2009, σελ. 157-186.
  • Αποχαιρετισμός στο Γένος: Αυτοκρατορία και Πατριωτισμός στο Χαρτογραφικό Έργο του Ρήγα, 1796-1797, Αθήνα, Μένανδρος, 2009, 80 σελ.
  • Following Pausanias: The Quest for Greek Antiquity, Athens, Oak Knoll Press for the NHRF and the Gennadion Library, 2007, 253 σελ. (σε συνεργασία με τους Μ. Γεωργοπούλου, C. Guilmet, Γ. Πίκουλα και Κ. Στάικο)
  • “The Isolarii, Fifteenth to Seventeenth Centuries», in David Woodward (ed.), The History of Cartography, Volume Three: Cartography in the European Renaissance, Chicago & Londον, University of Chicago Press, 2007, σελ. 263-284.
  • «Nikolaos Sophianos's Totius Graeciae Descriptio: The Resources, Diffusion and Function of a Sixteenth-Century Antiquarian Map of Greece”, Imago Mundi58 (2006), σελ. 150-182.


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