The Tabula Rogeriana, drawn by al-Idrisi for Roger II of Sicily in 1154,
one of the most advanced ancient world maps.
Modern consolidation, created from the 70 double-page spreads of the original atlas.
(Note that the north is at the bottom, and so the map appears "upside down")
Abu Abd Allah Muhammad al-Idrisi al-Qurtubi al-Hasani al-Sabti or simply Al Idrisi (Arabic: أبو عبد الله محمد الإدريسي; Latin: Dreses) (1099–1165 or 1166) was a Muslim geographer, cartographer, Egyptologist and traveller who lived in Sicily, at the court of King Roger II. Muhammed al-Idrisi was born in Ceuta then belonging to the Almoravid Empire and died in Sicily. Al Idrisi was a descendent of the Idrisids, who in turn were descendants of Hasan bin Ali, the son of Ali and the grandson of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.
Al-Idrisi traced his descent through long line of Princes, Caliphs and Sufi leaders, to The Prophet Muhammad. His immediate forebears, the Hammudids (1016–1058), were an offshoot of the Idrisids (789-985).
Al-Idrisi's was born in Ceuta, where his great-grandfather had fled after the fall of Málaga in Al-Andalus (1057). He spent much of his early life travelling through North Africa, and Spain and seems to have acquired a detail information on both regions. He visited Anatolia when he was barely 16. He is known to have studied in Córdoba, and later taught in Constantine, Algeria.
Apparently his travels took him to many parts of Europe including Portugal, the Pyrenees, the French Atlantic coast, Hungary, and Jórvík also known as York, in England.