Among the most beautiful and compelling works of Renaissance art, painted maps adorned the halls and galleries of princely palaces. This book is the first to discuss in detail the three-dimensional display of these painted map cycles and their full meaning in Renaissance culture. Art historian Francesca Fiorani focuses on two of the most significant and marvelous surviving Italian map murals--the Guardaroba Nuova of the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence, commissioned by Duke Cosimo de' Medici, and the Gallery of Maps in the Vatican, commissioned by Pope Gregory XIII. Both cycles were not only pioneering cartographic enterprises but also powerful political and religious images. Presenting an original interpretation of the interaction between art, science, politics, and religion in Renaissance culture, the book also offers fresh insights into the Medici and papal courts.