Cambridge University Library

John Speed proof maps - Atlas.2.61.1

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Cambridge University Library has one of five known sets of proof maps prepared for John Speed's Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine, which was published in 1611/12.

The maps were printed from copper plates which had been engraved, in reverse, by Jodocus Hondius in his workshop in Amsterdam. Maps printed from the plates - proofs - would have been sent back to England for checking.

The maps in Cambridge University Library's set of proofs are in a late state of preparation, but many were altered before being published. The map of Cheshire, which had been produced as early as 1603 by English engraver William Rogers, was completely replaced following the death of Rogers in 1604.

Below are the high quality scans of all 66 of the proof maps (requires Adobe Flash Player).

Unfortunately it is no longer possible for us to supply paper copies of these maps. However, we can supply digital copies (at a cost of approximately £12.00 each plus VAT ; please see the Imaging Services web pages for information on how to order) from which a third party would be able to print copies for you (the originals are approximately A2 in size, i.e. about 40 x 53cm or 16 x 20.5 inches ; for places in Cambridge that might be able to print copies see the Large Format Printing section here ).

The Press Release provides more background information about the atlas as does the article on pages 8-9 of the April/May 2011 issue of the University's Newsletter.

Great Britain & Ireland 

Great Britain & Ireland     


Britain at the time of the Saxon Heptarchy    


Bedfordshire Berkshire Buckinghamshire
Cambridgeshire Cheshire Cornwall
Cumberland Derbyshire Devonshire
Dorset Durham Essex
Gloucestershire Hampshire Hampshire: Isle of Wight
Herefordshire Hertfordshire  Huntingdonshire
Kent Lancashire Leicestershire
Lincolnshire Middlesex Norfolk
Northamptonshire Northumberland Northumberland: Holy Island and The Farne Islands
Nottinghamshire Oxfordshire Rutland
Shropshire Somerset Staffordshire
Suffolk Surrey Sussex
Warwickshire Westmorland Wiltshire
Worcestershire Yorkshire Yorkshire: North and East Riding
Yorkshire: West Riding    


Anglesey Brecknockshire Caernarvonshire
Cardiganshire Carmarthenshire Denbighshire
Flintshire Glamorganshire Merionethshire
Monmouthshire Montgomeryshire Pembrokeshire



Channel Islands

Channel Islands: Guernsey and Jersey    

Isle of Man

Isle of Man    


Connaught Leinster Munster