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MORDEN, Robert

The New Description and State of England, Containing the Maps of the Counties of England and Wales, In Fifty Three Copper-Plates … The Second Edition

Printed for Ralph Smith, at the Bible under the Piazza of the Royal-Exchange Cornhill., London, 1704
Octavo (195 x 130 mm.), full contemporary mottled calf, ornate blind panelled boards, ribbed spine with blind ruled compartments, calf gilt title label, original endpapers. With frontispiece engraved portrait of Queen Anne facing typographic title page, address to the reader, General Account, Contents and 55 copper engraved double page maps, pp. (4), i-[xx], 96, 89-96, 129-36, 113-128, 137-287 with 79-80 mis-numbered 78-79, despite the pagination the counties are in order. With light wear to joints, otherwise in very good condition.
Robert Morden was by 1701 a successful publisher on the London scene. His most notable cartographic contribution to date was arguably the county maps for Gibson’s edition of Camden’s ‘Britannia’ in 1695. A smaller more manageable atlas seemed to be called for and in 1701 he teamed up with Thomas Cockeril and Ralph Smith to produce ‘The New Description and State of England’. Morden contributed 54 small maps known as miniature Morden’s.

Following the death of Robert Morden in August 1703 there would have been a distribution of shareholding. Unfortunately, no record survives of these transactions. We can see from the new list of publishers on the title page that Thomas Cockerill also disposed of his shares, Ralph Smith retained his ownership and may well have expanded it. This edition was first advertised in the ‘Term Catalogues’ for Hilary in 1703/4 indicating a publication early in the year. Smith alone advertised the work in the ‘Daily Courant’ 9 March 1703/4. The title is entirely reset including now a reference to Robert Morden. The body of text however is a reissue of left-over sheets from the 1701 printing complete with pagination errors. In this example however, pp. 129-136 and 113-128 are bound in order of pagination which although the text is not disrupted places the counties out of alphabetical order. Hodson is incorrect in stating there are no alterations apart from the title page. The ‘List’ of notable people bound at the end is entirely renewed and expanded by a further fifty-one pages. Provenance: signature of ‘Robe: Morell’? on the title page; private English collection. References: Chubb (1927) 125; ESTC T225736; Hodson (1984-97) 125; Shirley (2004) T.Mord 4b.
Stock number: 10133

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