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LEWIS, William

Lewis's New Traveller's Guide, or a Pocket Edition of the English Counties. Containing all the Direct & Cross Roads in England & Wales

W. Lewis, No. 21 Finch Lane, Cornhill, London, [1819]-[32]
Octavo (150 x 115 mm.), contemporary half red calf, with paper boards, publisher’s paper title label affixed to upper board, spine with gilt tooling top and bottom and gilt title. With general map of England and Wales, engraved title page, Preface dated 1819, Contents, List of Mail-Coaches etc., 40 maps of the counties, North and South Wales as called for, in all 43 maps, each with a page of descriptive text, Yorkshire folding, all in full contemporary wash colour, first front free endpaper with upper portion torn away, some light foxing to the text, otherwise a good example.
This fine little series of maps was first published by James Wallis (fl.1810-25) c.1812 as ‘Wallis’ New Pocket Edition of the English Counties or Traveller’s Companion’. The maps are easily distinguished by the design of the title at the top of the map. They include a wealth of information with a key in the lower margin. A further edition was published c.1814 before they were used in two works by Patrick Martin, as the extremely rare ‘Sportsman’s Almanack and the New Travellers Guide’ which survives in just the one known example.

By 1819 the work was in the hands of William Lewis (fl.1796-1838) who reissued it as ‘Lewis’s New Traveller’s Guide’, reusing the title with its attractive vignette of a coach and four with postillions. Although undated the Preface is signed 16 October 1819. It was first issued with the maps still bearing the imprint of Martin below. This was understandably altered quickly; this example bears the corrected imprints of Lewis at Finch Lane. The atlas was on sale for many years, apparently unaltered. However, the maps of Gloucestershire and Somerset are printed on paper watermarked 1827 and that of Buckinghamshire may well be 1832. The maps of Essex and Warwickshire, Worcestershire and South Wales all bear watermarks of Whatman 1821.There have been some alterations to many of the maps, roads have been re-engraved, the etching to the coast lines has been removed and many new place-names added. According to the label pasted on the cover it was sold for ‘£1 1s.’, unchanged from its first issue.

There have been some alterations to many of the maps, roads have been re-engraved, the etching to the coast lines has been removed and many new place-names added. All of them are in lovely full early wash colour. Provenance: ownership inscription inside upper cover dated 30 August 1832?; private English collection. Carroll (1996) 68; Chubb (1927) 364; Worms & Baynton-Williams (2011).
Stock number: 10242

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