- About Surveying
Origins of Surveying
Surveying techniques have existed throughout much of recorded history. In ancient Egypt, when the Nile River overflowed its banks and washed out farm boundaries, boundaries were re-established through the application of simple geometry. The nearly perfect squareness and north-south orientation of the Great Pyramid of Giza, built c. 2700 BC, affirm the Egyptians' command of surveying.
- The Egyptian invented and implemented a land register (3000 BC).
- Under the Romans, land surveyors were established as a profession, and they established the basic measurements under which the empire was divided, such as a tax register of conquered lands (300 AD).
- In England, The Domesday Book by William the Conqueror (1086):
- covered all England,
- contained names of the land owners, area, land quality, and specific information of the area's content and habitants,
- did not include maps showing exact locations.
- Continental Europe's Cadastre was created in 1808
- founded by Napoleon I (Bonaparte), "A good cadastre will be my greatest achievement in my civil law", Napoleon I,
- contained numbers of the parcels of land (or just land), land usage, names etc., and value of the land,
- 100 million parcels of land, triangle survey, measurable survey, map scale: 1:2500 and 1:1250
- spread fast around Europe, but faced problems especially in Mediterranean countries, Balkan, and Eastern Europe due to cadastre upkeep costs and troubles.
A cadastre loses its value if register and maps are not constantly updated.
Large-scale surveys are a necessary pre-requisite to map-making. In the late 1780s, a team from the Ordnance Survey of Great Britain, originally under General William Roy began the Principal Triangulation of Britain using the specially built Ramsden theodolite.