The beginning of the history of geography in Lithuania is reaching as far as the times of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (12-18th century) and is mostly connected with one of the oldest Universities in Northern Europe - Vilnius University, established in 1579. For this reason geography as a science has deep traditions in Lithuania. One of the most influential organizations to the development of modern geography in the country is the Lithuanian Geographical Society, which was established in 1934 and, despite various turmoil, has managed to survive until today. The history of geography in Lithuania can be divided into four stages: the birth of geography science, the formation of the modern geography, geography during the Soviet occupation period and the geography after regaining the independence. Each of these stages will be further elaborated below.
The Birth of Geography Science
As a science, geography in Lithuania was developing in accordance to the general tendencies of Europe. On the other hand, it was influenced by various historic circumstances and the cultural and scientific advancement of the country (Česnulevičius, 2007).
The first known geographic works in Lithuania could be traced back to the maps drawn by Anton Wied, who was the painter at the palace of the Grand Duke of Lithuania - Žygimantas Augustas. One of his best known works – „Moscovia“, was the map of Moscow‘s Grand Duchy, which was made in Vilnius and published in Sebastians Münsters „Cosmography“ in 1544 (Vilnius University, 1994). Another, famous work during those times, was the map of the Grand Duchy of Lithuanian (further GDL), which in 1613 was published by W. J. Blaeu in Amsterdam (Samas, 1997). The preparation of it was led by the GDL nobleman and cartog...
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...upickaitė, D. (2014 m. 05 26 d.). Geography and the Geographical Society in Lithuania. from http://www.lgd.lt/en/about-us/history
Lithuanian Geographical Society . (2010). 2014 05 26 from http://www.lgd.lt/en
Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences . (2014). 2014 05 26 from http://www.leu.lt/en/about_university/history.html
Russian Geographial Society. (2014). 2014 05 25 from http://int.rgo.ru/about/history/chronicle/
Samas, A. (1997). Maps and Their Creators. Vilnius: Science and Encyclopedia Publishing Institute.
Snyder, T. (2004). The Reconstruction of Nations: Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus, 1569-1999. New Haven: Yale University Press.
Švedas, K. (2002). The Most Famous Lithuanian Geographers. Vilnius: Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences.
Vilnius University. (1994). The History of Vilnius University. Vilnius: The State Publishing Centre.
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