Map of the Ancient Roman World from their perspective

Roman Empire became the most dominant country globally by the AD 98–117 through a mixture of military power, political adaptability, economic enlargement. This enlargement drastically transformed the Mediterranean world.

Not surprisingly, Rome considered itself the center of the world. Below are ancient maps that clearly illustrate how the Romans saw their place in the world.

Orbis Terrarum
Orbis Terrarum - Map of the Ancient Roman World from their perspective

Orbis Habitabilis Ad Mentem Popmpnii Mela

This map was created in AD 43 by Pomponius Mela, who was the earliest Roman geographer.

Pomponius Mela was born in Tingentera (now Algeciras) and died c. AD 45. Pomponius splitting the earth into five zones, of which two only were habitable, he declares the existence of Antichthones, populating the southern temperate zone inaccessible to the folk of the northern temperate regions from the unendurable heat of the intervening torrid belt. On the boundaries and divisions of Europe, Asia, and Africa, he echoes Eratosthenes; like all classical geographers from Alexander the Great (except Ptolemy), he considers the Caspian Sea as a gulf of the Northern Ocean, corresponding to the Persian and Arabian (Red Sea) bays on the south. India occupies the south-eastern angle of Asia, whence the shore trended northwards to Scythia and then swept round westward to the Caspian Sea.

Ancient map - Orbis Habitabilis Ad Mentem Popmpnii Mela
Reconstruction of Pomponius Mela’s world map by Konrad Miller, 1898



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