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Geography of the World: The Essential Family Guide to Geography and Culture


Author: DK

Publisher: DK Children


Publish Date: August 21, 2006

ISBN-10: 756619521

Pages: 304

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface


Abbreviations used in the book: Imperial ft feet in inches sq miles square miles mph miles per hour °F degrees Fahrenheit
Metric m meters mm millimeters cm centimeters km kilometers sq km square kilometers km/h kilometers per hour °C degrees Centigrade
Other abbreviations BC Before Christ AD Anno Domini US United States UK United Kingdom

THIS BOOK IS DIVIDED INTO six continental sections – North America, Central and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australasia and Oceania. At the start of each section there is a map showing the whole continent, and pages describing the peoples who live there. Each country, or group of countries, then has an individual map showing its cities, towns, and main geographical features. This is followed by country pages that go into detail about life in the countries. The reference section can be used to find out more about subjects of general interest, such as world religions or political systems. There is also a glossary, a gazetteer, and an index. These two pages explain the symbols and information found throughout the book.

COUNTRY PAGES The country pages, like this one for Japan, have been designed to give you as much information as possible about the way of life in a country – its people, their traditions, politics, and the economy. All the countries of the world are featured in the book.

COLOR BORDERS Each continental section has a different color border to help you locate that section easily. This page on Japan has the color used for all the countries in Asia.

HEADING Every page in the book has a heading telling you the name of the section followed by the name of the country featured on that page.

FACT BOXES Each country page has a box with important statistics about that country, such as its area, the size of its population, its capital city, and its currency. The notes below explain some other entries that appear in most fact boxes.
Locator map This shows the position of a country, or countries, in relation to its neighbors.This locator map shows where Japan lies off the coast of mainland Asia.

Major religions The figures provide a breakdown of the religious beliefs of the people. All the main religions are explained in detail on pages 274–275.

Government This describes how a country is ruled, or governed. The main types of government are explained on pages 270–271.
Adult literacy rate This is the percentage of people in a country that can read and write. Literacy rates are based on the ability of people aged 15 or over to read and write a simple sentence. Find out more about literacy on page 277.
Life expectancy The number shows how long the average person in a country can expect to live. Figures are a combination of the average life expectancy for men and women. There is more about life expectancy on page 276.

FIND OUT MORE BOXES At the end of each country entry there is a Find out more box. This directs you to other pages in the book where you can discover more about a particular subject. For example, one of the pages on Japan explains how the country suffers from hundreds of earthquakes a year. You can find out more about earthquakes and why they occur by turning to page 13 in the book.

MAP PAGES Each country appears on one of the regional maps, like this one of Southern Africa, shown below. These maps show many geographical features, such as mountain ranges, deserts, rivers, and lakes, along with capital cities and other major towns. The key on the far right shows you what these features look like on the maps. A compass point fixes the direction of the region in relation to North (N).

USING THE GRID The grid around the outside of the page helps you find places on the map. For example, to find the city of Durban, look up its name in the gazetteer on pages 284–295. Next to the word Durban are the reference numbers 247 I10. The first number shows that Durban is on page 247. The second number shows it is in square I10 of the grid. Turn to page 247. Trace down from the letter I on the grid, and then across from the number 10. You will find Durban situated in the square where the number and the letter meet.

SCALE Each map features a scale which shows how distances on the map relate to miles and kilometers. The scale can be used to see how big a country is, or how far it is from one place to another. Not all maps in the book are drawn to the same scale.

LOCATOR MAP This map shows the position of the country, or countries, within the continental section. It also shows how near the country is to the equator, the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, or the Arctic or Antarctic Circle. This gives an indication of how hot or cold a country is. Find out more about climate on pages 14–15.

WEATHER FACTS The average temperature and amount of rainfall recorded in January and July are shown around the main map. Weather facts are given for several places on the map to show how temperature and rainfall can vary within an area. The weather inland, for example, will generally be hotter than that near the coast.


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