Matteo Ricci was a Jesuit priest and missionary who is held in high esteem due to the many things he accomplished in his life, which includes creating one of the first world maps and sundials, along with his scientific and mathematical work. Ricci was able to verify that China and Peking were the same place as Cathay that Marco Polo had identified previously.
The maps that Ricci made were considered far more accurate than the ones even made in Europe. The Chinese for the first time had a clear picture of the world as it was known then and its proportions. He was also important in the world of mathematics because he translated numerous important works into Chinese and opened many doors for the culture to advance.