SAXTON, Christopher (c.1542-1606) and William WEB. [The Maps of all the shires in England and Wales... newly revised, amended and reprinted. London: Printed for William Web at the signe of the globe, Cornhill, 1645.]
2 (430 x 525mm). 25 double-page engraved maps only, of 35, but including the two sheet map of Yorkshire, in this copy joined and folding, maps numbered in manuscript 1 to 25, with two additional maps of Scotland (unsigned) and Ireland by Blaeu, verso blank (1635 or later). (Lacking title, Yorkshire map soiled and slightly torn along folds, some light staining and browning to margins, first and last few maps soiled at extremities, a few small tears). The maps rolled in a contemporary vellum travelling wrapper, with tie holes on outer flap (edges slightly worn). Provenance: Manuscript index of maps on right margin of Angliae map in a contemporary hand; Mrs Lave (18th century inscription on outer flap).
AN UNRECORDED COMPOSITE COPY OF ONE OF THE RAREST OF ENGLISH COUNTY ATLASES. This the first reissue of Saxton's atlas is recorded in 3 copies, at the British Library Map room; University Library, Cambridge and the Bodleian Library (Gough collection). The selection of maps in this atlas leaves out all maps which do not figure coastlines and the maps are ordered to follow the coast of England from Kent around to Cumbria, Northumberland to Essex. The addition of the maps of Scotland and Ireland completes the nautical situation. A land-based traveller would require maps of central England and in general would use a limp reversed calf binding, whereas in nautical circles the use of vellum was more prevalent. For these reasons it seems likely that this travelling copy of the Saxton/Web atlas was acquired by a mariner rather than a land traveller.
Of William Web (fl. 1616-52) relatively little is known. Skelton argues that William Web, a bookseller in Oxford, had the atlas printed in London, Oxford being the centre of the King's Court during the Civil War 1642-46, and that the republishing of the Saxton atlas with Charles I arms was a loyal gesture. STC however identifies William Web (2) as a separate print seller in London, active 1635-45. The Skelton case seems to explain the reason why the atlas did not receive a wide circulation, perhaps copies of the printed sheets were lost en route to Oxford from London, certainly any copies after the surrender of Oxford in 1646 would have been difficult to sell, or indeed may have been seized, especially as most sheets were engraved with the Charles I's Arms. This copy with the addition of Blaeu's Ireland map is more likely to have been made up and bound in London, where maps such as the Blaeu would have been available in the map trade. Lawrence p. 45-47; Skelton 27; Chubb LVII; not in Wing.