Catalog Archive
Auction 153, Lot 442

1637 Edition of Camden's Britannia with Maps by Kip and Hole

"Britain, or a Chorographicall Description of the Most Flourishing Kingdomes, England, Scotland, and Ireland, and the Islands Adjoyning, our of the Depth of Antiquitie", Camden, William

Subject: Britain, Atlases

Period: 1637 (published)


Color: Black & White

9.5 x 13.7 inches
24.1 x 34.8 cm

This is the third of only three editions of Camden's Britannia with county maps by William Kip and William Hole. The majority of the maps are based on Christopher Saxton's monumental survey of England and Wales. This example contains only 19 of the original 57 maps - see below for the full list of maps - including 18 county maps and a map of Scotland. Each map is finely engraved with handsome embellishments, including elaborate title cartouches, large compass roses, and decorative distance scales. All of the maps are double-page with the exception of the map of Rutlandshire, which is single-page. The map of Scotland, Scotia Regnum, was engraved by Hole and is based on Mercator's 1595 map. The map extends to include the Hebrides Islands and a portion of the Orkney Islands, and is filled with place names and strong topographical features. The map is richly embellished with a strapwork title cartouche, elaborate compass rose, sea monster, sailing ship, and a stippled sea.

In addition to the maps are eight plates of coins of the Romans and Britons on four leaves, as well as a number of additional engravings and diagrams within the text. Originally published in Latin, the text was translated into English by Philemon Holland for the 1610 edition, which was again used in the 1637 edition.

This example includes the following maps:
1. Comitatus Bercheriae vulgo Barkshy
2. Glocestriae Comitatus olim Sedes Dobunorum
3. Oxoniensis Comitatus vulgo Oxfordshy
4. Buckingha Comitatus in quo olim insederunt Cattieuchla
5. Bedford Comitatus olim pars Cathifuclanorum
6. Middlesex olima Trinoban Tibus Habita
7. Cambridge Comitatus quem olim Iceni Insederunt
8. Rutlandiae Omnium in Anglia Comitatuum Minimus pars olim Coritanorum
9. Lincolniae Comitatus ubi olim Insederunt Coritani
10. Notingamiae Comitatus olim pars Coritanorum
11. Universi Derbiensis Comitatus qui olim Coritanorum fuit Descriptio
12. Brecknoc Comitatus pars olim Silurum
13. Monumethensis Comitatus, quem olim Incoluerunt Silures
14. Cardigan Comitatus pars olim Dimetarum
15. Mongomery Comitatus qui olim pars Ordovicum
16. Caernarvo Comitatus pars olim Ordovicum
17. Cumbria sive Cumberlandia quae olim pars Brigantum
18. Northumbriae Comitatus olim sedes Otadinorum
19. Scotia Regnum

Title page, 19 maps, 8 plates of coins, 822 pp., 233 pp. (separate section on Scotland), index. The frontispiece is also lacking in this example. Small folio, full leather with original covers and modern spine with raised bands and red leather label with title in gilt.

References: Shirley (BL Atlases) T.CAMD-1e.

Condition: A

The condition code is for the maps, the majority of which are in fine or near fine condition, with dark, crisp impressions on clean sheets and a few minor tears confined to edges of the sheet. A few maps are very good with light toning. The text is mostly clean and bright with occasional old manuscript notations, and a couple of text leaves are missing. The book has been professionally conserved with a few leaves reinforced along the fore-edge. The new spine has a few small chips at top and bottom, and the original boards are moderately worn with bumped corners. Overall a very attractive example.

Estimate: $2,000 - $2,400


Closed on 5/20/2015