A superb map of Cornwall by arguably the most famous English cartographer, John Speed (1552-1629). It was published in the ‘Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine’, 1612, the first atlas of the whole British Isles. He was a tailor by trade and had a fascination for history. He used numerous sources for the counties, this one is derived from the manuscript of John Norden and had the plates engraved by Jodocus Hondius in Amsterdam. His maps are noted for being the first to include the boundaries of the hundreds, and for introducing town plans on the maps. Here we find a fine birds-eye depiction of ‘Launceston’. This view is drawn from John Norden’s lost manuscript. This example of the county of Cambridgeshire is from the 1676 edition published by Thomas Bassett and Richard Chiswell. Provenance: private English collection, acquired from P J Radford in the 1970s. Quixley (1966) no. 7; Skelton 92.