Piri Reis’ Maps of Libyan coasts in the 16th century

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Ahmed Muhiddin Piri known as Piri Reis is the most prominent and famous Ottoman cartographer. He lived in the 16th century between 1470 and 1554, and joined the navy since his youth with his uncle who started his life as a pirate such as was customary then before officially joining the Ottoman Navy and participating in several naval battles during one of which he died.

Piri, who became known as Reis, followed on his footsteps, sailing in many places in North Africa, the Mediterranean coast, the Indian Ocean, the Red Sea and others. His work was not limited to being a regular sailor, instead he worked on drawing maps of coasts he visited. He has a book on that in addition to other maps. Among the coasts he drew appear the Libyan coastal cities in his maps.

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A map of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East

 

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A map of the coast of Benghazi, Sirt, Misrata and several areas

 

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A map showing the coasts of Tripoli: The Saraya Castle, Janzour, Tajura, South of Gherian, the city of Ghadames, Fezzan and other places

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