SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER) An Atlas of England and Wales, FIRST EDITION, [Christopher Saxton], 1579
Lot 132
SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER)
An Atlas of England and Wales, FIRST EDITION, [Christopher Saxton], 1579
Sold for £106,250 (US$ 142,135) inc. premium

Lot Details
SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER) An Atlas of England and Wales, FIRST EDITION, [Christopher Saxton], 1579 SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER) An Atlas of England and Wales, FIRST EDITION, [Christopher Saxton], 1579 SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER) An Atlas of England and Wales, FIRST EDITION, [Christopher Saxton], 1579 SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER) An Atlas of England and Wales, FIRST EDITION, [Christopher Saxton], 1579
[SAXTON (CHRISTOPHER)
An Atlas of England and Wales], FIRST EDITION, hand-coloured engraved frontispiece heightened in gilt depicting Queen Elizabeth enthroned under a canopy as the patron of Geography and Astronomy (Hind state II), letterpress index leaf (setting D), hand-coloured double-page engraved plate showing coats of arms and a table of counties, 35 double-page engraved maps after Saxton, by Hogenberg, Lenaert Terwoot, Cornelis de Hooghe, Augustine Ryther, Francis Scatter and Nicholas Reynolds (Yorkshire folding), ALL COLOURED IN A CONTEMPORARY HAND (most with the bunch of grapes watermark, 6 shaved touching one or two horizontal borders, very small burnhole in Dorset), letterpress index cut to size and remounted with small loss touching 2 letters, ink inscription "Saxtons maps" in blank upper border of frontispiece, ink numbering on index and upper corner of plates, eighteenth century calf gilt, morocco spine label gilt-lettered "Saxtoni Tabulae Geograph Angliae", rubbed [ESTC S123137; Chubb 1; Skelton 1], folio (417 x 284mm.), [Christopher Saxton], 1579 [but c.1590]

Footnotes

  • FIRST EDITION OF THE MOST CELEBRATED AND EARLIEST ATLAS OF ENGLAND AND WALES, WITH ALL THE MAPS HAND-COLOURED. At the instigation of Thomas Seckford, master of requests to Queen Elizabeth, Christopher Saxton (c.1542-1610) undertook a survey of the British counties between 1570 and 1578. The maps were engraved and printed between 1574 and 1578 and, with the addition of the frontispiece portrait of the Queen (attributed to R. Hogenberg), were first issued in atlas form in 1579. This copy has the coats of arms plate issued circa 1589, suggesting that this copy was printed in about 1590, "when the atlas assumed its definitive form" (Skelton).

    Provenance: "1903. Ditchley Books", bookplate, almost certainly that of Harold Lee-Dillon seventeenth Viscount Dillon (1844–1932). Dillon-Lee's family home was Ditchley, Oxfordshire, the estate originally purchased by his fore-bear Sir Henry Lee (1533–1611). Lee was the Queen's Champion from 1559-90, and commissioned Marcus Gheeraerts' "Ditchley Portrait" of Elizabeth, probably to commemorates a lavish entertainment he held at his estate for the Queen in September 1592. The painting depicts the Queen standing upon a cartographic image of Britain derived from the maps in Saxton's atlas, her foot placed in the county of Oxford. The portrait was bequeathed by Lee-Dillon to the National Portrait Gallery in 1932, the year before Ditchley was sold. The "Ditchley Books" bookplate is also present in a sixteenth century manuscript copy of Sandys' A relation of ye state of religion... (held at Princeton University, MS 199) which once belonged to Henry Lee's brother, Cromwell Lee; Robert Theodore Gunther (1869-1940, founder of the Museum of the History of Science, Oxford), bookplate; thence by family descent to the vendor.
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