Restoring A 300 Year Old Map Found Stuffed Up A Scottish Chimney

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(via) There are magicians in this world, and then there are the very special people who can restore ancient documents and maps. One uses sleight of hand and the occasional rabbit, while the other uses special tools, no small amount of time and the careful application of dizzying expertise. Take, for example, the case of this huge 17th century map that was found crumbled in a large ball and unceremoniously stuffed up a chimney in the north east of Scotland. The seemingly destroyed mess of paper, fabric, text and images is currently in the process of being restored by Book & Paper Conservator Claire Thomson at the National Library of Scotland. She certainly has her work cut out for her, with much of it detailed in a new Discover article. (“Once it was unfurled, I was able to assess its condition … which filled me with dread.”) You can follow the ongoing story of the map here, but the two short documentary films embedded below make for a revealing start…

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