Sultan Sharafuddin and Najib looking at the Maps of Malaya and Borneo book while the Regent of Perak Raja Dr. Nazrin Shah and Curtis look on.
KUALA LUMPUR: An extensive map collection of Malaya and Borneo over the last 1,800 years have been painstakingly compiled into a book.
Titled Maps of Malaya and Borneo: Discovery, Statehood and Progress, it is co-authored by the Sultan of Selangor and Datuk Richard Curtis.
The book showcases a collection of maps that included early Portuguese, Dutch, French and English, nautical charts and encyclopedias.
Curtis said their 30 years of painstaking research works had led them to publish the book on the history of the nation’s mapping – as seen through the eyes of Western and Asian mapmakers.
“Our narrative starts from the Ptolomaeic era circa 100AD, when the first maps of South East Asia were drawn, and ended in the mid 1960s when the Malaysian Government took over modern mapping – a task that Google are now uplifting to another level,” he said at the launch of the book here yesterday.
It was launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak while Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah graced the function.
Curtis hoped that the book would become the standard reference in all Malaysian libraries so that readers could look back into the nation’s history “from times when roads were limited to discovering that even in the 16th century, many of Malaysia’s names were known in Europe”.
The book has been published in two editions. The standard edition is selling for RM120 while the large deluxe version is priced at RM450. They are available at all major book stores.