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The Fool’s Cap Map – Solving a 450 Year Old Mystery

The Fool’s Cap Map: The Fool’s Cap Map (left) is by far my favorite map ever made. Enhanced, no doubt, by the fact that it’s one of the “biggest mysteries in the history of western cartography.” I’ve been fascinated with maps ever since I was a kid, I still hang them on my wall, I even bought the National Geographic World Atlas. But I cannot hold a candle to the map enthusiast, Frank Jacobs, who hosts the blog – Strange Maps. I remember getting hooked on Jacobs’ blog back when it was on WordPress. Whenever possible, Jacobs would find a new map to feature and bring tons of insight along with the interesting map. A lot of people recognized Jacobs dedication to the topic including Big Think, which now hosts him. Jacobs has also written a book on maps and you can find an interview with him on Freakonomics here. And so it was while continually returning to Jacobs’ blog for more cartographical delights when I initially met the Fool’s Cap Map. It instantly strikes you because the picture of the jester’s outline is so detailed, you almost demand to see a face in the middle of it. The fact that it is replaced by the world gives it an eerie inhuman look. The couple of comments on it at the bottom suggest images of the astronauts on the moon with their shields on or of scuba gear in Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Frank Jacobs describes it (Click to continue…)

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