The successful firm of W. & A. K. Johnston was founded by Sir William Johnston and was based in Edinburgh from 1825. The following year he was joined by his brother Alexander Keith Johnston. In 1861, the firm published the ‘Royal Atlas’ dedicated to the Queen in which Price Albert had shown great interest. A reduction of this popular work was published in 1868 entitled the ‘Handy Royal Atlas’ dedicated to the Prince of Wales. It ‘resembled its parent closely in the style and quality of its 45 double-page maps’ (Smith). The atlas was enlarged at first to 52 maps and then again here to 62. For this issue, the maps are numbered to 51 with separate un-numbered maps of the North and South Poles recording the latest explorations. Further new maps included one of Manchuria reflecting the conflict for control of the region, Indo-China, Japan & Korea, Southern Rhodesia which declared great support for Britain at the outbreak of World War I, ‘Natal and Orange Free State’ reflecting the Maritz Rebellion or Boer Revolt, Mexico to illustrate the Civil War 1913-14 and finally one of Chile and Argentina. A fascinating atlas recording accurately the world at the outbreak of the First World War. Provenance: Clive A. Burden Ltd. (2017) Catalogue XIV item 95; private English collection. Smith, (2000); Smith (2001).