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The Mapping of North America

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OWEN, John & BOWEN, Emanuel

Britannia Depicta or Ogilby Improv'd; Being a Correct Coppy of Mr: Ogilby's Actual Survey of all ye Direct & Principal Cross Roads in England and Wales

Printed and sold by Thomas Bowles, fourth edition, London, 1753
Octavo (205 x 150 mm.), full contemporary calf, gilt ruled, raised gilt edged bands, worn. pp. (2), 8 (numbered 1-5), 273. With 273 engraved plates of road strips and county maps. With minor spotting and light toning as is often the case, good margins throughout, otherwise in good condition.
Emanuel Bowen was one of the most prominent figures in English cartography during the middle of the eighteenth century. Since the highly influential ‘Britannia’ by John Ogilby had been first published in 1675 no smaller version had been issued. Then in the period 1718-20 a flush of four projects were conceived, three of which were completed. This was unquestionably the most successful. It is the only one of the three to include a set of county maps with the road strips. The author of the text was John Owen an antiquarian who had been admitted to the Middle Temple in 1718. Although known as the Owen and Bowen atlas it was in fact published jointly by Bowen and John Bowles. It had a long life running to numerous editions; this is an example of the 1753 standard issue according to Hodson. A John Bowles and Son Catalogue issued in the same year offers the atlas for 10s. Bennett (1996) pp. 40-1; Harley, J B (1970) Introduction to “Britannia Depicta”; Hodson 162; Shirley BL T.Bow 1l.
Stock number: 8660

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