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Rare Early Geological Map of Greece -- Possibly The First Geological Map of the Region

Unusual early geological map of Greece, compiled by Dr. Karl Gustav Fiedler.

Includes a handwritten key at the bottom margin, further identifying Geological details.

This map represents a geognostic-bergmannische (geological-mining) depiction of the Kingdom of Greece, meticulously compiled by Dr. Karl Gustav Fiedler, a Royal Saxon Mining Commissioner and Director of the Royal Greek Mountain Survey from 1834 to 1837. The title, translated to English, reads: "Geognostic-Mining Map of the Kingdom of Greece, compiled by Dr. Karl Gustav Fiedler, Royal Saxon Mining Commissioner, Director of the Royal Greek Mountain Investigation from 1834 to 1837, Knight of the Golden Cross of the Order of the Saviour, etc., 1840."

Karl Gustav Fiedler (August 26, 1791 – November 21, 1853) was a German scientist specializing in mining and mineralogy, whose scholarly work, particularly on fulgurites, commenced to gain academic attention starting in 1817.

The trajectory of Fiedler's career is noted for its extensive fieldwork. His title as Royal Saxon Mining Commissioner may not fully reflect his active engagements, as his contributions were heavily tied to exploratory and research journeys, often commissioned by various governments and private entities. His surveys led him across diverse European landscapes and into the depths of Russia.

Mapping Greek Geology and Mineralogy

Between 1834 and 1837, he undertook a journey through the Kingdom of Greece. The goal was to systematically record the local mineral resources and to submit proposals to the state regarding their extraction and utilization. Furthermore, Fiedler was to provide assessments regarding the land improvement possibilities of the country. During his stay, he was appointed by the Greek government as the designated Director of the Royal Greek Mountain Investigation. However, when ultimately the founding of this mining company did not come to fruition, he returned to Germany and continued his travels domestically and to Italy and Spain.  

Fiedler's reports and findings, while significant, did not escape later scholarly critique. Carl Wilhelm von Gümbel, in 1878, and Conrad Bursian, in 1883, expressed reservations about the scientific robustness and historical precision of his work. Despite these critiques, Fiedler's contributions to geological and mineralogy studies remain a part of the scientific dialogues of the time.


The map is rare on the market and institutionally.

No examples noted in American Libraries.

Condition Description
Segmented and laid on linen.