Day of Surveyor
Now every profession has its own professional holiday. There are also people who work on making maps. The day of the surveyor and cartographer is marked on the first spring month every second Sunday, regardless of whether it coincides with other holidays or not. So, in 2009 he fell on the 8th of March. For those who do not associate themselves with card-making, this holiday passes unnoticed, which is absolutely wrong. After all, if you understand, the work of cartographers and surveyors is important for each of us.
How there was a holiday
When to celebrate the day of the surveyor in Russia, the Presidential Decree, signed in 2000 on November 11, was determined. The month was not chosen by chance. It was in March 1720th that the Great Tsar Peter I issued a decree on the necessity and compulsion to carry out cartographic works in all areas of the Russian state. And in March 1919 the Soviet government represented by the Council of People's Commissars signed the Decree on the creation of the Higher School of Geodesy (Higher Geodetic Management). The day of the surveyor in Ukraine is combined with the geologist's day and celebrated in April, every first Sunday of the month. Sometimes it falls on April 1 and coincides with a day of laughter. There are separate organizations that celebrate the professional holiday of geodesists and cartographers on March 15, in honor of the Decree of the Council of People's Commissars, issued in the distant 1919.
Cartographers of antiquity
The one who thinks that maps are needed only to determine the object on the ground is mistaken. With the help of them you can even study the history of our planet! It is believed that the first more or less accurate images of the terrain appeared in the 14-15 centuries of our era. But they existed long before the birth of Christ. An example of this are the maps of the Greek scientist Ptolemy, on which the outlines of all continents are perfectly visible, including Antarctica. Later, many cartographers of the Middle Ages used his works. French scientist Oronzius Fini (Orontheus Finius) as early as 1531 presented the map of Antarctica to the world, that is, almost 300 years before its official opening! Even earlier, in 1513, Antarctica was depicted on the map of Piri Reis, the admiral, the scholar and most eminent eunuch of Constantinople. There were other compilers, which it is appropriate to mention on the day of the cartographer and surveyor. They left us the maps of the coldest continent on the Earth without ice, with the exact location of rivers, lakes and hills, which modern scientists learned only in the 20th century.
Mystery of Atlantis
The venerable Plato in the 6th century BC made a mystery to mankind about Atlantis. Since then, she has been diligently sought in one corner of the Earth, then in another. Thanks to the ancient maps of Antarctica, compiled with astonishing accuracy, a version of the existence of the lost civilization arose there. The works of unknown cartographers who lived 6 or more thousand years ago and did not assume that they would someday celebrate the day of the geodesist and cartographer allowed modern scientists to make many discoveries. Thanks to their maps, it is established that for a very long time in Antarctica there was a rather mild climate, close to the Mediterranean one. There were streams, green gardens. Under such conditions, an ancient civilization could well exist on the mainland. In the 20 th century, scientists conducted on the ice continent seismic, in-depth studies, drilled ice layers and took samples. Studies have confirmed that ancient cartographers drew their maps with striking accuracy. How they did it, not having a single modern device, is unknown.
Each map has a grid of coordinates (longitude and latitude). Now to determine the longitude use a chronometer. The first such device was invented in the 18th century by John Harrison. Prior to this, mapmakers longitude was determined by observing the eclipse of satellites, and the latitude by the angle of inclination of the earth's light above the level of the horizon. The location of the objects was determined visually, and the distance was measured with cords or with a wheel. It was scrolled from object to object, and then multiplied the length of the rim by the number of revolutions. But in order to draw out the contours of distant continents, it was necessary either to reach them or to study them from a great height. Now it is done with the help of aerial photography, use satellites, but before? It remains a mystery how people who lived 5-6 or more millennia ago managed to draw quite accurately the outlines of unknown continents.
In the 13th century, a compass was invented, which greatly facilitated the work of cartographers. At that time, not only land maps were compiled, but also sea ones, which were used by seafarers. It was this that lay in the chest of Christopher Columbus. With the development of navigation and with the advent of precision instruments, the compilation of maps has significantly expanded and improved. Many states equipped expeditions to study unknown lands. As a result, the maps became more precise, and the first globe appeared. It was created by the German Martin Beheim. A little later, Gerhardt Mercator and Abraham Ortelius made the world's first atlas. It is believed that the science of cartography was invented by Mercator. On the day of the surveyor and cartographer many mention his name. It was this scientist who introduced a system of geographical signs and cartographic projections. In the 18th century, they began to measure the altitude of objects above sea level, which marked the beginning of topography.
Cartography in Russia
In Russia, as in all developed countries, great importance was attached to the knowledge of the location of rivers, lakes, forests, cities and roads between them. Ivan the Terrible issued an order to compile a detailed drawing of the area. As a result, the so-called "Big Drawing" appeared, which has now been lost. We have only a comment on this work. But copies of the map of Siberia, which was made by order of Peter Godunov in 1667, were preserved. And Fedor Godunov, using the "Big Drawing", compiled his map. And although he was only king for a couple of months, the cartographer was excellent. Peter I, thanks to the decree of which we celebrate the day of the geodesist in March, not only took over the cartography of Russia, but also made this issue one of the most important in the state. To perform the work, Peter I invited foreign engravers, detached the best Russian officers and geodesists (Kozhin and Urusov). Later, the first Atlas of Russia was published with 19 maps of various regions.
Cartography developed after Peter I. Paul I instructed the work to the military department, Alexander I founded the corps of military topographers, and Nicholas I approved the creation of the Pulkovo Observatory. The methods and technologies of mapping have continued to improve. In the twentieth century, cartographers began to use lithographic and photochemical methods of depicting objects. Electronic technologies, the invention of plotters, printers, scanners, and aerial photography have further improved the process of creating accurate maps. Now without them it is impossible to imagine our life. The cards are used by motorists and tourists, geologists and builders. Surveyors make for them terrain plans, cadastres, maps of railways and highways. The day of the surveyor in 2014 fell on March 9, just after the women's holiday. The President congratulated the geodesists and cartographers of the country and wished them further success in labor.
Congratulations on the Day of the Surveyor and Cartographer
On the streets of cities and villages you can often see people with a rod, level or theodolite. They carry out measurements, determine the correct geographic location of objects, perform binding of corners. Congratulate them with a professional holiday in simple words, and can be poetry. For example, these are:
Surveyors, atlases and maps of all compilers,
Truly your work is invaluable,
You are each hillock of the earthly abode,
The streams and rivers that flow through it
A hundred times measure, a hundred times check
And draw us a map for the ages,
Share your leisure with bad weather,
Look at the difficulty of hardship.
So let you smile more often
Good luck, and fate keeps from troubles,
Let all your ideas come true,