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The Mapping of North America

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MOLL, Herman

A Set of Fifty New and Correct Maps of England and Wales, & c.

London, 1724-[25]
Quarto (260 x 220 mm.), full contemporary limp calf, with large flap and original tie, one loose, worn. With title page and 50 engraved maps by Herman Moll. Title with small margin repairs, first few leaves with centrefold water stain, Middlesex and the last map of the islands with a smudge. Complete with contemporary blank endpapers.
A lovely example of the FIRST EDITION of this atlas bound for the pocket. It is believed that Herman Moll emigrated from Holland in the late 1670’s and soon established himself as a geographer and engraver of note. Subsequently he made the move into publishing. The ‘Daily Journal’ of 31 July 1724 announced that ‘this day is publish’d, in folio, ‘A New Description of England and Wales”. It contained 50 maps complete with descriptive text. It is considered his finest English work being noted for its depictions of antiquities along the margins of each map, Moll noted on the title page; ‘And, to render the Work more acceptable to the Curious, the Margins of each Map are adorn’d with great Variety of very remarkable Antiquities.’ In the same year (1724) Moll published the work offered here. It is believed to have been issued later than the ‘New Description’. The earliest advert known is dated 27 March 1725. This being the pre-Gregorian calendar early March would still have been considered 1724. The earliest issues of both works contain the maps without plate numbers. It was when the second work was issued, without text, that the need for numbers to aid binding was created. The title describes how all the maps named in the index are ‘except two, composed and done by Herman Moll’. Those maps are Stukeley’s map of ‘Britanniam’ and the map of Denbigh and Flint. Provenance: manuscript ownership inscription upper right of title page effaced; public auction. Beresiner pp. 156-7; Hodson 174; Shirley BL T.Moll 6b.
Stock number: 1861

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