Map Key Definition

A map key is an incollection on a map that explains the symbols, provides a scale, and also normally identifies the kind of map projection offered. Technically, the key is component of the map legfinish. The crucial describes the icons while the legfinish holds the key and other indevelopment.

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Purpose Of A Map Key

The function of a map essential is to tell you the interpretation of the symbols on a map. The crucial on a map interprets each symbol so that you deserve to check out and also understand the map.

For example, what does this symbol, ⇞, mean? Is it vital to know what it means? Is it pointing in a direction, standing for a single tree, or indicating a forest?

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The map crucial is the just method for you to recognize for sure what the above symbol means.


Table of Contents


Definition

Map Key Symbols

When making a map, Cartographers (map makers) cannot create out every little thing and make it fit. They need quick, straightforward drawings, referred to as map symbols, to rearea composed indevelopment. If you execute not know what ·, ∘, or ⊙ indicates, you cannot understand also the map.

A map crucial tells you what all the icons on the map mean. For example, the small babsence dot, ·, indicates a town or village, the open up circle, ∘, suggests a city of at leastern 75,000 human being or that ⊙ implies a state resources. A map key can tell you that ★ commonly mirrors a country’s resources.

Every map offers its very own map icons, depending upon the indevelopment the cartographer wants to present. Map tricks deserve to display signs for organic sources, populace centers, bodies of water, types of market, and much more.

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Here are some various icons appearing in map keys:

Types Of Map SymbolsSymbolMeaning
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River
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Railroad Tracks

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Food
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Bar
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Cafe
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Shopping
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Grocery
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Arts
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Lighthouse
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Theater
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Tourist Attraction
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Casino
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Aquarium
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Event Venue
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Amusement Park
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Historical Site
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Museum
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Movie Theater
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Monument
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Music
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Relic
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Gas Station
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Parking
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Car Rental
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Hotel
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Resort
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ATM
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Bank
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Hospital
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Pharmacy
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Medical
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Park / Forest
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Mountain
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Sports Stadium
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Zoo
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Campground
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Cemetary
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Golf Course
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Garden
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Hiking
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Boating
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Fishing
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Airport
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Train
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Metro
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Subway
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Bus
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Rail
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Ferry
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Bridge
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Civic Building
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Article Office
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Library
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Police Station
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School
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Restroom / Bathroom
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Miscellaneous
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Church or Temple
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Synagogue

As you view in this list of Google Maps icons above, various colors reexisting various categories. Green for outdoors, ovariety for dining and drinks, and so on.

Map Key Examples

This map of Tennessee has a key that shows how the land is supplied. Tiny signs that look prefer pigs, plants, and also rock show wright here pets are increased for food, wright here plants are grvery own, and also wbelow ores and also rocks are mined.

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This map crucial offers natural colors for organic formations however uses abstract forms for humale task. It uses coded squares to show damages and archeological sites. It provides circles to stand for villperiods and towns. The herbal formations such as ice and also desert are presented in colors that resemble the actual things.

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Legfinish Vs. Key

You might wonder what the difference is in between a map vital and also a map legfinish. The crucial provides the map understandable. The map legend normally includes not only the map essential to the signs however many other beneficial information:

Map scale, in huge units prefer miles and also kilometers, or tiny devices like feet and also metersMap projection name, prefer Mercator, Cassini, Equirectangular, Gauss–Krüger, or SinusoidalMap publication dateCartographer or company name

Today we use both phrases to intend the very same point, yet the map essential is technically discovered in the map legfinish.

Compass Rose On A Map

The compass on a map is dubbed a compass rose. Its main function is to suggest north, yet it practically constantly shows the cardinal directions (north, south, east, and west). Sometimes it tells the intermediate or ordinal directions, too: northeast, southeastern, northwest, southwest.

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Unprefer all the other icons on the map, the compass climbed does not normally appear in the vital or legfinish. It is normally attracted in an unimportant location, like an ocean or huge desert, so that it does not cover locations. By tradition, a lot of maps orient so that north is at the top of the map.

On maps and nautical charts handling tides, cruising, and coasts, the compass increased is also dubbed a "windrose" or "rose of the winds." Highly exact nautical charts and some topological maps display both true north and magnetic north on the compass climbed.

Map Key Quiz

See if you have the right to find your method approximately a map by answering these questions.

See more: What Is A Stressed And Unstressed Syllable Is Stressed Or Unstressed?

Define the “map vital.”What is an additional name for a legfinish on a map?Why is a legend necessary for the majority of maps?What symbol is alongside Washington DC on the map?What does a star typically expect on a map?Fill in the blank: a map"s ___________ explains its markings and symbols.What map symbol for a mountain variety is many regularly used?

The key to becoming a legfinish in your very own time is to research tough. Don’t peek at the answers below till you have actually tried your best!

You could specify “map key” as the component of a map inside the map legend that tells what the map symbols intend. We usage a map key and also map legend interchangeably.Another name for a legfinish on a map is a map vital, although you can gain exceptionally picky and also say that the legend holds the map essential and also various other indevelopment.A legfinish is crucial for many maps because cartographers cannot write whatever into the map, so they require icons. The signs call for a key to understand also them.The star symbol, ★, is next to Washington DC on the map.A star, ★ , normally suggests a nation funding on a map.Fill in the blank: a map"s legfinish or key defines its marmonarchs and also symbols.The map symbol for a hill selection is often a tiny triangle or upside-dvery own ∨: △ or ∧.

What you learned:

After functioning your way with this lesboy and also video, you have learned the:

Definition of a map vital and also a map legendPurpose of a map vital in the map legendTypes of symbols on a mapDifference in between a map crucial and also map legend