The first printed map of Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Huntingdonshire and Rutland
By SAXTON, Christopher, 1579
[Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Huntingdonshire and Rutland] Northampton Bedfordiae Cantabrigiae Huntingdoniae et Rutlandiae Comitatuum
Vicinarumq. Regionum partium adiacent nova veraq. Descriptio. A. D. 1576
- Author: SAXTON, Christopher
- Publication place: London
- Publisher: Christopher Saxton
- Publication date: 1579.
- Physical description: Double-page engraved map, fine original colour in outline, contemporary annotation on verso in brown ink, some light marginal soiling.
- Dimensions: 420 by 550mm. (16.5 by 21.75 inches).
- Inventory reference: 15347
The names of the counties, in Latin, are recorded in an elaborate cartouche in the upper left corner of the map, surmounted by the royal coat-of-arms, although with the standard lion and dragon here replaced by winged cupids. Below, encircled by an olive wreath, is the Seckford crest accompanied by both its mottoes. Opposite this is found the map’s scale, along with the banner identifying Saxton as the cartographer, but the name of the engraver is omitted. A much larger scale is used on this map than on most of the others in the atlas, due to the broad area covered across the five counties. Initially produced for defensive purposes, Saxton’s work represents the vulnerable coastal areas in far more detailed, while the landlocked counties often grouped together. Additionally, like all the maps in Saxton’s ‘Atlas of England and Wales’, this map bears his watermark, a bunch of grapes, to identify the work as original.