For the purpose of these pages, a "regular map" is defined
as an of embedding a graph (a set of vertices and edges)
in a compact 2-manifold such that
Note that this definition excludes star-polyhedra.
- the 2-manifold is partitioned into faces,
- each face has the topology of a disc,
- it is face-transitive:
for any two faces, there is a symmetry operation of the whole thing that
takes one face to the other,
- its faces are regular:
for any face and any two edges of that face, there is a symmetry operation
which maps one edge to the other and maps all edges of that face to edges
of that face,
- it is vertex-transitive:
for any two vertices, there is a symmetry operation of the whole thing that
takes one vertex to the other,
- its vertices are regular:
for any vertex and any two edges of that vertex, there is a symmetry operation
which maps one edge to the other and maps all edges of that vertex to edges
of that vertex.
For the reasoning behind this choice of definition, see
What do we mean by "Regular" for Regular Maps?
Further, optional, criteria are listed below. Regular maps violating these criteria are listed
on these pages, with red
indicating the violations.
If a regular map is shown with one or more red blobs, you may
choose to ignore it, deprecate it, or describe it as "degenerate"
or "pathological". Or you may reserve your contempt for those with
what you consider the more severe red blobs.
- Each face has at least three edges
- Each vertex has at least three edges
- A face may not share a vertex with itself, equivalently a vertex may not share a face with itself.
- A face may not share an edge with itself, equivalently an edge may not share a face with itself.
- An edge may not share a vertex with itself, equivalently a vertex may not share an edge with itself.
- It is "flag-transitive", with full symmetry including reflection, not chiral
For the sphere, this definition gives the five regular maps usually
known as the five "platonic solids" or "regular polyhedra", and some
other things. For manifolds of genus
greater than 0, it gives some things which which have a pleasing
amount of symmetry, but will be less familiar to many readers.