Manuscripts and Special Collections


Term Definition
Aerial From the air
Anmorphic Distorted
Axonometric Pictorial representation
Bird's eye view View from overhead
Block plan Plan showing the outlines of buildings
Blueprint Photographic print, composed of white lines on a blue background; used for making copies of plans
Cartographer Person who draws maps
Cartography The drawing of maps or charts
Cartouche A scroll-shaped design or ornament, often appearing in the corner of a map or plan
Compass A symbol inserted in a map or plan to indicated the direction of due north
Cross-section See section
Elevation A drawing or diagram made by projection on a vertical plane
Enclosure Process by which open fields were converted into private ownership
Ground plan Plan of the floor of a building; sometimes ground plans would be produced for each storey
Key Text explaining colours, symbols or abbreviations used on a map or plan
Landscaping plan Plan of parkland or gardens, used to plot changes to a planting scheme
Legend A written explanation accompanying a map
Map A visual representation of part of the earth's surface, showing physical, geographical or political features
Ordnance Survey Government agency responsible for mapping the United Kingdom
Orientation The position of a map or plan relative to the points on a compass
Plan A drawing or diagram made by projection on a horizontal plane
Profile A plan representing the outline of something; or a sectional drawing of a building
Relief A map or plan indicating the variation in the elevation of a particular area or geographical feature
Scale The size ratio between a map or plan and the area represented
Section Representation of a geographical feature or building as it would appear if cut across a vertical or horizontal plane
Sketch A rough drawing of a map or plan, often hand-drawn, providing minimal detail
Terrier A written survey or list of lands and property which accompanies a map
Tithe The payment of one tenth of produce or earnings towards the support of the church or clergy
Topography The surface features of a place or region
Vignette A small decorative design or illustration found on some maps and plans
Worm's eye view View from underneath


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Manuscripts and Special Collections

Kings Meadow Campus
Lenton Lane
Nottingham, NG7 2NR

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 4565
fax: +44 (0) 115 846 8651