410 x 550 mm., early outline colour, cut close to neatline with some minor loss, with extended margins all round, otherwise in good condition.
AN UNRECORDED INTERMEDIATE STATE. Christopher Saxton’s plate of the south-east, including Kent, Surrey and Sussex, was quite likely the first of the six to be produced in 1575 as he worked his way westwards along the south coast. It was the work of the engraver Remigius Hogenberg. Philip Lea flourished 1666-1700 as a cartographer, globe and instrument maker and map seller. His atlases were rarely uniform usually being made to order and his editions of Saxton’s atlas are similarly varying in content although built around his stock of the original plates. These he acquired sometime around 1689, but from whom is unknown. After acquisition of the Saxton plates Lea set about updating them for publication. This process involved extensive re-engraving of the old plates by incorporating new geographical and decorative material. However during this process some copies of the atlas were sold and two distinct issues have been identified with two different versions of the title page. The early edition dated to c.1689 survives in just three known examples.
Lea gradually effected the alterations to the plates he desired which included converting the remaining Latin titles to English, the addition of crowns, crosses and mitres to represent various categories of town. Roads were added to the maps following the publication of John Ogilby’s landmark ‘Britannia’ in 1675. Similarly Hundreds were added to the remaining maps as were town plans. The finished set of plates were completed by 1693 and represent their final cartographic form as only the imprints were altered after this date. In the finished form they also appeared in a French edition entitled ‘Atlas Anglois contenant Les Cartes Nouvelles tres Exactes …’ surviving in a unique example.
Of this map of the south east only four known examples survived in the early Lea states, Burgess cites one of these being an early proof before the addition of the title upper right. This example is a PREVIOUSLY UNRECORDED intermediate state bearing the addition of the roads and the harbour wall at Dover identified by ‘Peer’. It DOES NOT however yet bear the five coats of arms along the lower margin or the imprint of Lea in the oval upper right which is hear still blank. Burgess (2009) intermediate state between no. 1.v & vi; Evans & Lawrence (1979) pp. 12, 50-3 & 160; Kingsley 1 not recording this state; Shirley (2004) T.Sax 1g; Worms & Baynton-Williams (2011).