Oxfordshire by John Speed

Oxfordshire by John Speed

Code: 52571

£1,100.00 Approx $1449.28, €1300.24
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Author: John Speed

Publisher: Sudbury and Humble

Date published: 1646

Long title:Oxfordshire described with ye Citie and the Armes of the Colledges of yt famous University ao 1605. Copper engraving, possibly later but not modern hand colouring. Overall size : 55cms.x 41.9cms. Image size : 525mm.x 384mm. A stunning map with 18 college arms around the right and left side ; large town plan of Oxford top right with key to the colleges and places of note below. Royal arms and arms of the Earls of Oxford are also in the map top left and mid right respectively and bottom middle are two gowned, academic figures holding dividers indicating the scale with a globe behind. The text on the back is in English and a delight of its own. Speed explains that Oxford takes its name from the Saxon Foord of Oxen and states that :The blessings both of the sweet-breathing heavens, and the fruiful site of this Counties soil are so happy and fortunate, that hardly can be said whether exceeds...and he goes on to say that : both heaven and earth accorded to make the inhabitants healthful and happy ; the hills loaden with woods and cattle, the vallies burthened with corn and pasturage, by reason of many fresh springing Rivers which sportingly ther-thorow make their passage..much historical detail is given too. One frown mark below Buckland adjacent to Faringdon; old strengthening of the centrefold some 7 cms on verso, old tape stain at top of centrefold on verso and very slight crack (not touching map). An early example with very attractive, vibrant hand colouring. 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