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Guide of maps published by Library of Congress

August 11, 1999
Web posted at: 6:06 p.m. EDT (2206 GMT)

(CNN) -- An illustrated guide to more than 230 literary maps has been published by the Library of Congress. "Language of the Land: The Library of Congress Book of Literary Maps," an annotated, illustrated guide, was inspired by an exhibit of the same name, culminates a three-year education and reading promotion project funded by a grant to the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress from the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund.

The authors -- Martha Hopkins of the Interpretive Programs Office and Michael Buscher of the Geography and Map Division -- define a literary map as one that "records the location and identity of geographical places and features associated with authors and their works." They said the maps serve "as a guide to the worlds of novelists, poets, dramatists, and other authors of imaginative literature."

The book is divided into eight illustrated chapters: World Literature; Individual Regions and Countries; Britain; United States; Regions of the United States; Individual States and Cities; Specific Books and Authors; and Imaginary Worlds, Folklore, Myths, Fairy Tales, and Nursery Rhymes. Maps for 41 U.S. states, as well as major cities such as New York, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia, are included. Other map subjects include Sherlock Holmes, Black Writers, and Thoreau's Walden Pond; classic books such as Huckleberry Finn, The Red Badge of Courage, Moby Dick, and The Call of the Wild; and the wholly imaginary landscapes of Oz, Middle Earth, and Neverland. Specific authors represented by individual maps range from popular fiction writers such as Richard Adams and Margaret Mitchell to famous figures such as Jane Austen, William Shakespeare, and William Wordsworth. A 20-map color portfolio begins with "The Literary Map of Latin America" and concludes with "An Ancient Mappe of Fairyland, Newly Discovered and Set Forth."

"Language of the Land: The Library of Congress Book of Literary Maps" -- a 304-page, 10- by 10-inch, hardbound book -- is available for $50 from the Library of Congress Sales Shop and from the Superintendent of Documents, P.O. Box 371954, Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7954.

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