An attractive and detailed early 17th Century map of Somerset which was based on the original survey by Christopher Saxton in c.1575, engraved by William Kip and published in William Camden’s Britannia* (London:1607) This particular example comes from the much harder to find first edition of 1607 which has Latin text on the reverse. It is also the earliest printed map of the county which can be acquired at an ‘affordable’ price.
*’Britannia’, first published in 1586, was one of the most popular and influential books of the period. The work of the Elizabethan antiquarian, William Camden (1551-1623), it was a detailed historical and topographical description of Great Britain. Its patriotic sentiments, in particular, both appealed to and generated the growing sense of nationalism that was coursing through late Tudor / early Stuart society. Between 1607** and 1637 county maps, based largely on Saxton’s surveys and engraved by William Kip and William Hole, were added. These maps have the distinction of being the first set to show each county individually as opposed to several being grouped together on one page. Camden’s Britannia continued to be published well into the 19th century; from 1695 to 1772, county maps by Robert Morden were used, and from 1789 to c.1815, those by the renowned John Cary.
- This is an original copperplate engraving with later hand colour.
- Printed area is approximately 37.6cms by 27.8cms.
- The map is in very good condition; centrefold, as issued. The left and right margins are cropped, also as issued, but have had paper borders added professionally. Click on image for better view.
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- Guaranteed to be over 400 years old.