Clive A. Burden LTD. Rare Maps, Antique Atlases, Books and Decorative Prints

The Mapping of North America

Mr. Philip D. Burden​
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Thomas Philipott’s ‘Villare Cantianum’ in its first edition of 1659 has become a rare book. A key work in the history of the county of Kent it is also renowned for bearing a later state of Philip Symonson’s large two-sheet map of the county. Although the author is stated to be Thomas Philipott it is recognized that much of the work was that of his father John (1589-1645) who was born in Folkestone. He would become MP for Sandwich and was a royalist during the Civil War. He wrote ‘The New Description of Kent’ which was never published and it is this which is believed to have formed much of his son’s work. Thomas (d.1682) spent much of his life in Greenwich.

Philip Symonson’s map of Kent first published in 1596 is generally considered to be the FIRST PRINTED LARGE SCALE MAP OF AN ENGLISH COUNTY. Barber describes it as ‘one of the most sophisticated maps to be produced in England under Elizabeth.’ Symonson (d.1598). The two sheet map was engraved by Charles Whitwell (fl.1593-1611) a maker of mathematical instruments who was apprenticed to Augustine Ryther in 1582. In 1590 he became a freeman of the Grocer’s Company. He was also the engraver of a recently discovered small silver globe, the earliest surviving made in England. When Robert Dudley fled to Italy in 1606 it is known that he took ten of his instruments.

Only two complete examples of the first state are known; in the British Library and the British Museum. As did so much material of the day the copper plates ended up in the hands of Peter Stent sometime around 1645 when he at first added his imprint. Of this only three examples are recorded. A third state was prepared in 1659 for inclusion in Thomas Philipot’s work. For this he employed the services of the great Wenceslaus Hollar (1607-77). Pennington describes the engraver in glowing terms: ‘Of all etchers, Hollar is certainly the most varied in subject, one of the most accomplished in technique, and with a style that is full of a charm, a humour, and a good nature that are evidently the character of the man himself’. He was born in Prague and made his way to England in the party of Lord Arundel arriving in London in late December 1636. For the upper right of the map Hollar etched a panorama of Dover Castle and upper left one of Rye. The latter is after a painting by the great seventeenth century court painter Sir Anthony van Dyck (22 March 1599 – 9 December 1641). Pennington states that the original van Dyck painting was in the possession of Sir Bruce Ingram (1877-1963) editor of the Illustrated London News. It is now in the Pierpont Morgan Library, New York. The fourth state of eight included here erases the old date and replaces it with Stent’s address and the date 1659, arguably the final version for the book. The map was of such significance in its day that it was often removed from the book, as originally here, particularly since it displayed the roads. Provenance: bookplate of John Austin Esq.; manuscript ownership inscription of ‘John Austin of Broadford’ in the margin of the title page & another p. 3 dated 1753; private English collection; Clive A. Burden Ltd. Catalogue IX (2012) item 71; private English collection. Barber, Peter, ‘Mapmaking in England, ca. 1470-1650’ in ‘History or Cartography’ vol. 3 pt. 2 p. 1631; Burgess (2009); DNB; ESTC R35386; Globe (1985) no. 343a; Hind (1952-55) I. pp. 223-4; Pennington (1982) no. 665; Rodger (1972) no. 209; STC 23594.5; Upcott (1968) p. 352; Worms (2007) p. 1713; Worms & Baynton-Williams (2011 p. 719.


Villare Cantianum: or Kent Surveyed and Illustrated. Being an exact Description of all the Parishes, Boroughs, Villages, and other respective Manors Included in the County of Kent

Printed by William Godbid, and are to be sold at his house over against the Anchor Inne in Little Brittain, London, 1659
Folio (295 x 190 mm.), in full early calf corners repaired, rebacked ribbed spine with gilt ruling and ornate gilt decoration to the compartments, gilt title and date. 12 + 401, [1] pp., with large folding engraved map, and 4 text engravings. With the errors of pagination called for. The first ten leaves a little damaged at the extremities, large folding map laid on linen with one or two areas of loss due to either worming or the double folds present as issued, tipped in, otherwise in good condition.
Stock number: 10964
£ 2,500
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