Auction 179, Lot 479

"London", SDUK Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge

Subject: London, England

Period: 1843 (dated)


Color: Black & White

25 x 15.2 inches
63.5 x 38.6 cm

The beginning of the nineteenth century saw a period of rapid market growth and innovation in the map publishing world. Increased literacy and public interest in new frontiers and colonies overwhelmed the market because it was oriented toward the small, affluent market of the previous century. With the intent to fill this void, The Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge (SDUK) was founded in 1828 in London, by Lord Brougham and a group of men dedicated to the education of the aspiring working class and the Utilitarian ideal of 'Knowledge is Power.' The society produced an array of education materials, but the series of maps was one of their most successful ventures. A number of engravers and printers were used to produce the maps, which eventually exceed 200 sheets, and continued to be published after the Society as a whole ceased to function.

This impressively detailed map of London was drawn and engraved by Benjamin Rees Davies. It shows the city's entire grid from Hyde Park east to the West India Docks and identifies major buildings, parks, roads, railroads, and docks. Published by Chapman & Hall.


Condition: A

There are a few faint spots of foxing. Light toning and soiling is primarily confined to the blank margins.

Estimate: $160 - $190

Sold for: $325

Closed on 9/16/2020