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The 10 Rarest Books in the World

By Becky Ferreira Apr 26, 2013

8 of 11

Ptolemy's Geographia Cosmographia

Ptolemy was one of the most influential thinkers of all time, and Geographia Cosmographia was his masterpiece. An expansive atlas, it includes many detailed maps of the known world (which was pretty much just the Mediterranean... it was the 2nd Century, after all). The original scrolls are lost to time, but Ptolemy gained a new audience during the Medieval Period, and those editions seriously interest book collectors (for example, a 1477 printing of Geographia Cosmographia was sold in 2006 for $4 million). Because we are a pretty self-involved species, even brilliant men like Ptolemy couldn't shake the idea that the sun simply had to be revolving around the Earth, so he put forward a model of a geocentric universe that would hold firm for 1,400 years. Until...

Tags: shakespeare, books, slideshows, collections, books-and-comics, antiques

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