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Somersetshire

Somersetshire : J. Speed

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A sought-after map of Somerset with an inset plan of Bath. John Speed (1552-1629) is arguably the most famous English cartographer of any period as a result of his atlas "The Theatre Of The Empire Of Great Britaine" in which his maps of the individual English counties appeared. The maps are perhaps the best known and amongst the most sought after of all county maps. The maps themselves were derived from the best and most up-to-date sources available predominantly those of Saxton and Norden. However Speed also made innovations of his own, introducing town plans on many of the maps vignette scenes of topographical, historical or archaeological interest and also the coats of arms of local Earls and Dukes. The overall effect is to produce very decorative, attractive and informative maps. Although this example is one of the latest published, 130 years after first issue, re-engraving of the old and worn plate renders all detail clear and legible and the addition of roads to the map updates the content. With attractive later hand colour and minor restoration to marginal weakness, but a very acceptable of Henry Overton's edition of a great map.
region: Somerset
mapmaker: J. Speed  
place and date of publication: London 1612-1743
medium and colour: copperplate, Coloured
size in mm: 380 by 490mm (15 by 19.25 inches).
ref: 41216

Price: £ 800

 
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