JEAN-LOUP CHARMET / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JEAN-LOUP CHARMET / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Map scale. Scale from a historical map showing the different units used to measure lengths in various countries. There is also a directional compass (at centre right). The units shown are those of (from top to bottom): Germany, Brabant (Belgium); France; Italy; 2 standard scales. The differences in meas- urements between nations were of ancient origin but have now largely disappeared. Taken from a French map of the Netherlands from 1641. The Dutch and Belgians were, with the assistance of France, fighting for their independence from the Spanish. The man in black at centre left represents the Dutch whereas the crowned man carrying an inverted crucifix is the Spanish king Philip IV (1606-65).
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