A toposcope or topograph is a marker erected on hill
A hill is a landform that extends above the surrounding terrain. Hills often have a distinct summit, although in areas with scarp/dip topography a hill may refer to a particular section of flat terrain without a massive summit A hill is a landform that extends above the surrounding terrain. Hills...
Image:Himalaya_annotated.jpg|thumb|right|The Himalayan mountain range with Mount Everestrect 58 14 160 49 Chomo Lonzorect 200 28 335 52 Makalurect 378 24 566 45 Mount Everestrect 188 581 920 656 Tibetan Plateaurect 250 406 340 427 Rong River...
s or high places which indicates the direction, and usually the distance, to notable landscape features which can be seen from that point. They are often placed in public parks, Country park
A country park is an area designated for people to visit and enjoy recreation in a countryside environment.-History:In the United Kingdom the term 'Country Park' has a special meaning. There are over 400 Country Parks in England alone . Most Country Parks were designated in the 1970s, under the...
s, the grounds of stately home
A stately home is a "great country house". It is thus a palatial great house or in some cases an updated castle, located in the British Isles, mostly built between the mid-16th century and the early part of the 20th century, as well as converted abbeys and other church property...
s, or places of historical note, such as battlefields.
Toposcopes are often inscribed, and dedicated to particular people or events. They usually show the points of the compass
A compass is a navigational instrument that shows directions in a frame of reference that is stationary relative to the surface of the earth. The frame of reference defines the four cardinal directions – north, south, east, and west. Intermediate directions are also defined...
, or at least North
North is a noun, adjective, or adverb indicating direction or geography.North is one of the four cardinal directions or compass points. It is the opposite of south and is perpendicular to east and west.By convention, the top side of a map is north....
Smaller toposcopes usually consist of a circular plaque, or a plaque with a circle marked on it, mounted horizontally on a plinth
In architecture, a plinth is the base or platform upon which a column, pedestal, statue, monument or structure rests. Gottfried Semper's The Four Elements of Architecture posited that the plinth, the hearth, the roof, and the wall make up all of architectural theory. The plinth usually rests...
. They will have radiating lines indicating the direction to various landmarks, together with the distance and often a pictorial representation of the landmark.
Large toposcopes may be circular paved areas, with numerous plaques around the perimeter, each indicating a particular feature of the landscape.