Sahab – Father of Iran’s Cartography
The Sahab Geographic and Drafting Institute was founded in Tehran in 1935, becoming the first private geographic and mapmaking enterprise in the Middle East. Its founder was Abolghasem Sahab was succeeded by his son Abbas Sahab (1921-2000)
He was born in Fam, in Tafresh district in Iran. His father Ostad Abolghasem Sahab Tafreshi was a famous writer and author of about seventy titles on on historical, geographical, religious, cultural and artistic topics. Abbas Sahab devoted himself to cartography already during the time off his studies in Teheran. During his life he created more than 1,500 valuable works including maps, atlases, plates, scientific and medical illustrations, as well as geographical globes. He was very active on the international level. He was an an active member of the International Cartographic Association Between 1968-1971 he issued maps of other countries such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and Turkey.
In 1970 Sahab organised the First International Map Exhibition in the Tehran Teachers Training High School and in the next years he organised similar events in the other cities. In his last years he dedicated himself to his monumental work: The Great Atlas of 14 Centuries of Islamic Arts in 20 volumes, of which the first volume was published in 2000. After Sahab’s death the printing house was taken over by his sons and is still active today. Sahab’s unique library with thousands of volumes on cartography also survives intact today.
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