The Isle of Man by John Speed

The Isle of Man by John Speed

Code: 53666

£600.00 Approx $750.94, €662.98

Date: 1627

Long title: The Isle of Man exactly defcribedand into several Parish: Thes divided wth eurey Towne, Village, Baye, Creke, and River therin conteyned. The bodringe Coats wherewith it is circulated in their situations felt, and by the compafe accordingly fhewed, with their true diftance fron euery place. Into this Island by a feuerall scale obferved. DESCRIBED BY THO DVRHAM Ano. 1595 . Printed by John Dawson.  Copper engraving with later hand colouring.  Overall size: 52.2cms x 39.7cms; image size: 502mm x 378mm.
Highly decorative map with four ships in the sea and four sea monsters and their riders holding flags.  The map’s source was a survey made in 1595 by Thomas Durham, a surveyor about whom little is known.   Churches and boundaries and monastic ruins are shown ain addition to the standard features of towns, villages and castles. Nigel Nicholson observes that ,’To Durham must also be acribed the decision to show on the appropriate edges parts of the coastlines of England, Wales, Irealnd and Scotland in complete disregard of their actual distance from the island on the grounds of the map’s practical use to navigators in the Irish Sea’.  English text verso describing the history and geography of the island.  Three short edge tears bottom margin edge else very good condition.


Until his late thirties, John Speed was a tailor by trade but his passion for history and map-making led him to gain a patron in Sir Fulke Greville, the poet and statesman, who found him a post in the customs and helped subsidize his map-making, giving him “full liberty to express the inclination of my mind”. He became aquainted with the publisher William Camden, whose descriptive text was used by Speed for most of the maps in his atlas “The Theatre of Empire of Great Britain” published most probably in 1612 although it bears the date 1611 on the main title page. The maps were engraved in Amsterdam by Jodocus Hondius, one of the foremost engravers of his time. Speed’s maps are unique historical documents and the town plans featured on the maps are in most cases the first information we have of their early appearance. Their artistry has guaranteed the collectability of these maps in the centuries that have followed.`