9780140280395

A Map That Changed the World: The Tale of William Smith and the Birth of a Science

Winchester, Simon

ISBN 10: 0140280391 / 0-14-028039-1
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Publisher: Penguin Books, Limited (UK)
Publication Date: 2002
Binding: Softcover
Editorial Reviews for this title:
Synopsis:
Following the hugely successful hardback, this extraordinary tale of the father of modern geology looks set to be the non fiction paperback for 2002. Hidden behind velvet curtains above a stairway in a house in London's Piccadilly is an enormous and beautiful hand-coloured map - the first geological map of anywhere in the world. Its maker was a farmer's son named William Smith. Born in 1769 his life was beset by troubles: he was imprisoned for debt, turned out of his home, his work was plagiarised, his wife went insane and the scientific establishment shunned him. It was not until 1829, when a Yorkshire aristocrat recognised his genius that he was returned to London in triumph. "The Map That Changed the World" is his story.

Review:
Once upon a time there lived a man who discovered the secrets of the earth. He traveled far and wide, learning about the world below the surface. After years of toil, he created a great map of the underworld and expected to live happily ever after. But did he? Simon Winchester ( The Professor and the Madman) tells the fossil-friendly fairy tale life of William Smith in The Map That Changed the World.

Born to humble parents, Smith was also a child of the Industrial Revolution (the year of his birth, 1769, also saw Josiah Wedgwood open his great factory, Etruria, Richard Arkwright create his first water-powered cotton-spinning frame, and James Watt receive the patent for the first condensing steam engine). While working as surveyor in a coal mine, Smith noticed the abrupt changes in the layers of rock as he was lowered into the depths. He came to understand that the different layers--in part as revealed by the fossils they contained--always appeared in the same order, no matter where they were found. He also realized that geology required a three-dimensional approach. Smith spent the next 20 some years traveling throughout Britain, observing the land, gathering data, and chattering away about his theories to those he met along the way, thus acquiring the nickname "Strata Smith." In 1815 he published his masterpiece: an 8.5- by 6-foot, hand-tinted map revealing "A Delineation of the Strata of England and Wales."

Despite this triumph, Smith's road remained more rocky than smooth. Snubbed by the gentlemanly Geological Society, Smith complained that "the theory of geology is in the possession of one class of men, the practice in another." Indeed, some members of the society went further than mere ostracism--they stole Smith's work. These cartographic plagiarists produced their own map, remarkably similar to Smith's, in 1819. Meanwhile the chronically cash-strapped Smith had been forced to sell his prized fossil collection and was eventually consigned to debtor's prison.

In the end, the villains are foiled, our hero restored, and science triumphs. Winchester clearly relishes his happy ending, and his honey-tinged prose ("that most attractively lovable losterlike Paleozoic arthropod known as the trilobite") injects a lot of life into what seems, on the surface, a rather dry tale. Like Smith, however, Winchester delves into the strata beneath the surface and reveals a remarkable world. --Sunny Delaney

Review

Editorial reviews may belong to another edition of this title.
 

A Map That Changed the World: The Tale of William Smith and the Birth of a Science: Search Results

1.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: The Book Depository (Gloucester, UK, United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 122 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Following the hugely successful hardback, this extraordinary tale of the father of modern geology looks set to be the non fiction paperback for 2002. Hidden behind velvet curtains above a stairway in a house in London s Piccadilly is an enormous and beautiful hand-coloured map - the first geological map of anywhere in the world. Its maker was a farmer s son named William Smith. Born in 1769 his life was beset by troubles: he was imprisoned for debt, turned out of his home, his work was plagiarised, his wife went insane and the scientific establishment shunned him. It was not until 1829, when a Yorkshire aristocrat recognised his genius that he was returned to London in triumph. The Map That Changed the World is his story. Bookseller Inventory # AAU9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 13.45
Convert Currency
Shipping: FREE From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
2.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: Grand Eagle Retail (Romulus, MI, U.S.A.)
Bookseller Rating: 4-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1st. 129mm x 198mm x 21mm. Paperback. In the summer of 1815 an extraordinary hand-painted map was published in London. Some eight feet tall and six feet wide, brightly coloured - in sea-blue, green, bright yellow, orange, umbe.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 352 pages. 0.245. Bookseller Inventory # 9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 15.66
Convert Currency
Shipping: FREE Within U.S.A.
3.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: The Book Depository US (Gloucester, ., United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 122 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Following the hugely successful hardback, this extraordinary tale of the father of modern geology looks set to be the non fiction paperback for 2002. Hidden behind velvet curtains above a stairway in a house in London s Piccadilly is an enormous and beautiful hand-coloured map - the first geological map of anywhere in the world. Its maker was a farmer s son named William Smith. Born in 1769 his life was beset by troubles: he was imprisoned for debt, turned out of his home, his work was plagiarised, his wife went insane and the scientific establishment shunned him. It was not until 1829, when a Yorkshire aristocrat recognised his genius that he was returned to London in triumph. The Map That Changed the World is his story. Bookseller Inventory # AAU9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 16.34
Convert Currency
Shipping: FREE From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
4.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: The Book Depository US (Gloucester, ., United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 10

Book Description: Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 122 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Following the hugely successful hardback, this extraordinary tale of the father of modern geology looks set to be the non fiction paperback for 2002. Hidden behind velvet curtains above a stairway in a house in London s Piccadilly is an enormous and beautiful hand-coloured map - the first geological map of anywhere in the world. Its maker was a farmer s son named William Smith. Born in 1769 his life was beset by troubles: he was imprisoned for debt, turned out of his home, his work was plagiarised, his wife went insane and the scientific establishment shunned him. It was not until 1829, when a Yorkshire aristocrat recognised his genius that he was returned to London in triumph. The Map That Changed the World is his story. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 17.22
Convert Currency
Shipping: FREE From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
5.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: Internet Bookshop UK Ltd. (Gloucestershire, GLS, United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: 2002-07-04., 2002. Book Condition: New. Penguin. New Ed. Paperback. Book: VERY GOOD. 352pp. . Bookseller Inventory # NF-1748857

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 9.76
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 8.68
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
6.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: wordery (Norwich, NFLK, United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. This brand new copy of The Map That Changed the World A Tale of Rocks, Ruin and Redemption by Simon Winchester is waiting for you in our UK warehouse. If you order before 1pm on a working day, we'll get it in today's post. Otherwise we'll post it on the next working day. Simple no nonsense service from Wordery. UK delivery is within 3 or 4 working days. International delivery varies by country. Bookseller Inventory # 9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 12.65
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 6.32
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
7.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: Books2Anywhere (Fairford, GLO, United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: > 20

Book Description: Penguin Books Ltd, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK. Bookseller Inventory # FP-9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 8.26
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 14.21
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
8.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: Green Books (Wicklow, Ireland)
Bookseller Rating: 5-star rating
Quantity Available: 9

Book Description: Penguin, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New Book. Shipping: Once your order has been confirmed and payment received, your order will then be processed. The book will be located by our staff, packaged and despatched to you as quickly as possible. From time to time, items get mislaid en route. If your item fails to arrive, please contact us first. We will endeavour to trace the item for you and where necessary, replace or refund the item. Please do not leave negative feedback without contacting us first. All orders will be dispatched within two working days. If you have any quesions please contact us. Bookseller Inventory # V9780140280395

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 16.77
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 6.25
From Ireland to U.S.A.
9.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: Revaluation Books (Exeter, DEV, United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 4-star rating
Quantity Available: > 20

Book Description: Penguin, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 352 pages. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # __0140280391

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 16.59
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 9.47
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
10.

Winchester, Simon
ISBN 10: 0140280391
ISBN 13: 9780140280395
Bookseller: El Pinarillo Books (Surrey, UK, United Kingdom)
Bookseller Rating: 4-star rating
Quantity Available: 1

Book Description: Penguin, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New and in stock. 7/4/2002. Book. Bookseller Inventory # 0140280391

Bookseller & Payment Information | More Books from this Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Add Book to Shopping Basket
Price: US$ 18.50
Convert Currency
Shipping: US$ 14.19
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
View All Listings for this Book