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Imago Mundi


Imago Mundi: the International Journal for the History of Cartography

General Statement


What is Imago Mundi?

Imago Mundi is the only English-language scholarly periodical devoted exclusively to the history of maps, mapping and map-related ideas. It deals with all facets of the history and interpretation of maps and mapmaking in any part of the world, at any period.

All articles are refereed and represent original research. Only a selection of submitted texts are published, often after extensive revision. Some 70% of the articles and book reviews are by scholars living outside the UK; almost a third of them come from beyond the English-speaking world. Imago Mundi is multi-disciplinary and carries the insights, inter alia, of geographers, historians, art historians, historians of science, social scientists, and literary scholars. A biennial Imago Mundi Prize (awarded for the first time in 2005) is offered for the full-length article judged to have made the most significant contribution to the discipline.

History and current contents

Imago Mundi was founded in Berlin in 1935 by the Russian émigré Leo Bagrow. That first volume was in German but, thereafter, the text has been in English, with occasional articles in French. Only five volumes were published between 1935 and 1948; since 1975, the volumes have appeared annually. Volumes 27-46 were in hard covers; those before and since are paperback.

Imago Mundi had been published annually until Routledge Journals (part of the Taylor & Francis group) became the journal's publisher. Starting in 2004, it has been aappearing twice-yearly. The format is large (30x21 cm/11.5x8 in) and includes numerous illustrations (with colour added in 1997 and then fully integrated into the articles in 2021). Each annual volume has 8-10 articles. Keywords and abstracts are given in four languages (English, French, German and Spanish). All matters concerning subscription and distribution should be addressed to Informa (Taylor & Francis).

Journal of record

From the outset, Imago Mundi included the key ingredients of every subsequent volume: illustrated scholarly articles, book reviews, bibliography, and chronicle. The last three elements, which together provide an up-to-date summary of current developments, make it a journal of record. The format of the much-admired Bibliography was established under the editorship of Francis Herbert in 1976. It is provided with three indexes: authors, places and subjects. Chronicle, an organized listing of personal and institutional news, conferences, exhibitions and acquisitions, was introduced in 1977. The Book Reviews Editors aim to feature a large majority of titles within twelve months of publication. The journal also carries obituaries, summaries of PhD theses in progress, reports and short notices.

Abstracting Journals

Articles published in Imago Mundi may be found in a number of abstracting and indexing services.

Other activities

Since 1964, Imago Mundi Ltd has selected the venue for, and then co-ordinated, the series of biennial International Conferences on the History of Cartography.


Imago Mundi Ltd has no connection with the publication series 'Collection Imago Mundi' (directed by François Moreau), with Librairie Imago Mundi (Senonches, France), a bookseller specialising in History, Religion, Philosophy, &c.; with Imago Mundi Antique Maps Ltd, [formerly of] 40a Museum Street, London'; with Imago Mundi antiquarian booksellers in Buenos Aires, and apparently a publisher, also in Buenos Aires; with the Fundacja Imago Mundi (Krakow, Poland), or with any other organisation or business using that name
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