20 November 2003
II. ATLASES & PLATE BOOKS
BLOME, Richard (d.1705). Britannia: or, a geographical description of the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland, with the ilses and territories thereto belonging... and... there is added an aphabetical table of the names, titles, and seats of the nobility and gentry. London: Thomas Roycroft for Richard Blome, 1673.
2 parts in one volumes, 2° (360 x 235mm). Title in red and black. 24pp. of engraved coats-of-arms, 50 engraved maps, 5 folding, 45 double-page and 1 single-page plan of London, all carefully coloured by a later hand. (The folding map of Scotland with small hole at fold, the general map and the two folding maps of Wales close-shaved, the maps of Warwickshire and the East Riding of Yorkshire browned, the 7th leaf of coats-of-arms with 160mm. tear affecting images.) 18th-century mottled calf (rebacked in the late 19th-century, one corner also repaired). Provenance: Henry, 3rd Baron Arundell, of Wardour (1606?-1694, signature on title, one manuscript correction on p.31).
FIRST EDITION, EARLY ISSUE WITH ONLY 806 COATS-OF-ARMS. A LARGE COPY WITH WIDE MARGINS AND FINE HAND-COLOURING. Anthony à Wood wrote that Blome 'scribbled and transcribed from Camden's Britannia and Speed's Maps'. Nevertheless, particularly in the present large format, Blome's maps have a lively vivacity when hand-coloured that is perhaps lacking in Speed's more accurate images. Chubb XCIX; Skelton 90; Wing B-3207.
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