Auction 171, Lot 4

"The Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine. Presenting an Exact Geography of the Kingdomes of England Scotland and Ireland and the Isles Adjoyning...", Speed, John

Subject: Title Pages

Period: 1676 (published)


Color: Hand Color

9.5 x 14.8 inches
24.1 x 37.6 cm

Speed's ornate title page elaborates on the architectural framework used by Abraham Ortelius in the Theatrum with its intricately decorated superstructure of pillars, pedestals, and columns. In the alcove above the title is an indigenous Briton taken from an engraving of a Pict by John White that was first published by Theodor de Bry in 1590. The four other figures in the niches represent the conquerors of Great Britain: Roman, Saxon, Danish, and Norman. Vignettes of London and a ship are located on the foundation along with the publisher's imprint.

References: Shirley (BL Atlases) T.SPE-1b; cf. Shirley (TP) #32.

Condition: A

A crisp impression with a hint of toning. There are old tape stains and a short tear confined to the bottom blank margin, a chip in the left blank margin, and paper tape along the top edge of the sheet on verso.

Estimate: $400 - $475

Sold for: $300

Closed on 2/6/2019