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Poly-Olbion (Cardigan, Montgomery and Radnor) by Michael Drayton

£200.00 Approx $260.76, €220.51

Code: 53723

Date 1612-1622

Copper engraving with later hand colouring. Engraved by William Hole. Overall size  :  34.7cms.x 29cms. Image size : 335mm.x 255mm. Centrefold as issued; remnant of tape removal top and bottom of centrefold on verso else very good condition and delightful hand colouring.  
 Plinillymon, Welsh Plumlumon Fawr, mountain, 2,468 ft (752 m) high, W Wales, on the Powys-Ceredigion border W of Llanidloes. It has three summits and is the source of the Wye, Severn, and other waters. Shown here as two mountains with shepherds sitting on the top.   An uncommon map in very good condition
Born at Hartshill in Warwickshire, Michael Drayton, a friend of Shakespeare, was primarily a poet and in 1612 published his major work : ‘Poly-Olbion or Chorographical Description of all the Tracts, Rivers, Mountains, Forests and other parts of the Renowned Isle of Great Britain’. This work consisted of a collection of songs together with 18 maps (a second edition was published with an additional 12 maps) engraved by William Hole. While these maps are of various regions they could not be said to be accurate, being more inclined to fantasy rather than geography. The main features of the maps are the rivers and tributaries which are populated with nymphs and deities. Shepherds stand atop hills and towns and cities are symbolised by elaborately dressed figures with castles or spires on their heads. So, while they may not be terribly useful as maps they are certainly  very attractive and entertaining.