"Regiones Inundatae in finibus Comitatus Norfolciae, Suffolciae, Cantabrigiae, Huntingtoniae, Northamptoniae, et Lincolniae", Blaeu, (Family)
Period: 1645 (circa)
Color: Hand Color
21.3 x 17 inches
54.1 x 43.2 cm
The map details the Fenlands region centered roughly on Ely. North is oriented to the right, but the map does not have a compass rose. Locates the fortified cities of Kingslinne, Newmarket, Cambridge, Petersbourgh and more with 3-D icons. Notes the roads of the day along with small villages, forests, swamps, and more. The map is embellished with a coat of arms, blank dedication cartouche, and title and distance scale cartouches. The map depicts the area about half of the map as water and swamp with many of the towns and cities located on small islands. Today the entire region is completely reclaimed. Latin edition with text and pages 221 & 222 on verso. A most uncommon map.
The Fens, or Fenlands, were the largest swampland in England, an estuary and bay of the North Sea that has over eons silted up. Many of the place names on the map were sites of Roman stations. The Romans attempted draining the area and built a few roads across it, a few are shown on this map. By Anglo-Saxon times the area had become marshy from either natural causes or from lack of maintenance of the Roman works. The first effective drainage systems were developed in the seventeenth by the Dutch engineer Cornelius Vermuyden. Drainage work continued throughout the 19th century but various problems such as land settling, water accumulation, and periodic flooding plagued the project. The most recent drainage-improvement project was successfully completed in the mid-'60s. Today the region is mostly under cultivation plus numerous wildlife sanctuaries.
The map is actually very nice with full margins, good impression and original color. With some uneven toning short centerfold split in upper & lower margins.