The Kingdome Of Great Britaine And Ireland By I Speed.

SPEED, JOHN.

Publisher

Are to be Sold by Tho. Bassett in Fleet Street and Rich. Chiswell in St Pauls Churchyard,

Place

London

Date

1676

Item Description

Hand-coloured copper engraving, 15 x 20 ins. English text to verso. this map served as a general introduction to the series of regional and county maps in Speed's Theatre of the Empire of Great Britain. This was the only map to show all three kingdoms together. The upper part of the map is flanked by two views of London and Edinburgh. The view of London showing the Thames, London Bridge, and Old St Paul's was based on a drawing predating the Great Fire of London, but the view of Edinburgh was derived from an earlier view. Beneath the two views are two medallions, one featuring Britannia and the other depicting Cunobelinus. The Royal Coat of Arms is shown top left, and a panel on the right extends the North Coast of Scotland to the Isles of Orkney. A fine example. The central fold has been strengthened on the verso and the bottom right hand was torn away affecting approximately a square centimetre of the outer border of the map: this has now been skilfully restored. It has good margins approximately half an inch all round from the plate-mark. The hand-colouring is early and extremely well done. John Speed's justly renowned map of the Elizabethan Kingdom of Great Britain from his great early 17th century atlas of the British Isles. His survey was based on the earlier work of Christopher Saxton with the addition of his own embellishments, and separate plans of London and Edinburgh. The beauty of the 17th century engraving is particularly evident. The Bassett and Chiswell edition re-issued the plate first published in 1611 with some alterations. Mainly the addition of Speed's signature in the title and the removal of nearly all the hatching decoration designed to indicate the sea.

[Stock No. 26249]

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