Catalog Archive
Auction 157, Lot 461


"[Lot of 2] The Road from London to Rye in Sussex... [and] [The Roads from London to Barnstable, &c...]", Owen & Bowen

Subject: Southern England

Period: 1720 (circa)

Publication: Britannia Depicta...

Color: Black & White

6.3 x 7.9 inches
16 x 20.1 cm

Britannia Depicta Or Ogilby Improv'd was the most popular and successful Ogilby derivative atlas, published in response to public demand for a small road atlas that could be easily carried by travelers. The atlas reproduced Ogilby's strip-style road maps and added individual county maps. It was published by Thomas Bowles in a series of editions between 1720 and 1764. The historical notes that accompany each map were compiled by John Owen, a respected lawyer and antiquarian. The maps were engraved by Emanuel Bowen who went on to become one of London's leading engravers and print sellers in the 18th century. The maps are embellished with coats of arms and contain immense detail and topographical information. A compass rose orients each map and useful landmarks include hills, bridges, rivers and streams, windmills, churches, markets, parks and forests, water wells and even gallows.

These copper engraved, Ogilby-style strip road maps include coats-of-arms and descriptive text by John Owen. The first, The Road from London to Rye in Sussex..., features an elaborate title cartouche and an excerpt of Owen's text about London. The map appears on verso, spanning from Kent through Sussex to Rye Bay on the English Channel. The second is from the series The Roads from London to Barnstable, &c.... The recto contains the ornate title cartouche and a continuation of Owen's description of London. The map on recto covers the area from Andover in the county of Hampshire northwest into the county of Wiltshire. Size varies slightly.

References: Shirley (BL Atlases) T.BOW-1a.

Condition: B+

Light toning with a few edge chips and tears confined to the blank margins.

Estimate: $70 - $90

Sold for: $41

Closed on 5/4/2016