a topographic map on which the shape of the land surface is shown by contour lines, the relative spacing of the lines indicating the relative slope of the surface.
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What Bizarre Error Gave California Its Name?When the Spanish first began exploring the Pacific Coast of North America, they mistakenly believed that California was an island. (Some of the earliest and most fascinating maps of the state depict it as separated from the mainland.) This is considered one of the greatest, albeit short-lived, cartographic errors. Early mapmakers began labeling the “island” as California, the name of a mythical island in a book …
Origin of contour map
First recorded in 1860–65
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Science definitions for contour map
A map that shows elevations above sea level and surface features of the land by means of contour lines.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.