Keywords: cartography, history of geographical thought, oceans.
The conventional view of global hydrography, which maps three or four oceans (Pacific, Atlantic, Indian, and, sometimes, Arctic) did not emerge until
the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Previously, markedly different conceptions of sea space prevailed, conceptions that changed not only to reflect new
discoveries but also in accordance with changing intellectual fashions. By examining the history of global hydrography and by entertaining novel schemes of oceanic
division, one can see the world afresh and perhaps discover connections that are obscured by conventional geographical divisions.