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Miniature regional maps from John Speed's 1632
England Wales, Scotland and Ireland Described


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After John Speed, Abraham Ortelius, B. Boazio and Christopher Saxton. From John Speed's England Wales Scotland and Ireland Described. London: George Humble, 1632(?). Engravings, some by Pieter van den Keere. Ca. 3 1/2 x 5. Many maps with some trimming at bottom, as issued in atlas. Skelton: 19.

About 1605-1610, Pieter van den Keere (Petrus Kaerius) issued a collection of 44 maps of parts of the British Isles, probably intended for an atlas covering the entire isles. The counties of England and Wales were after the maps of Christopher Saxton (issued in 1579), those of Ireland were after the work of B. Boazio, and those of Scotland after Abraham Ortelius. Within a few years, John Speed issued his famous folio atlas of the British Isles and soon thereafter the van den Keere plates were in the hands of Speed's publisher, George Humble. Humble had new plates engraved for the sections of the British Isles missing from the original group, had the titles changed to English, and then in 1627 issued the new set of maps as a miniature version to accompany the second edition of the folio Speed atlas. This "miniature Speed" atlas was probably issued again in conjunction with the 1632 Speed folio, and it is from that edition that these wonderful maps come. They present a charming and rare depiction of the various regions of the British Isles in the early seventeenth century.


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