SPEED, John (1552-1629). Isle of Wight, Wight Island.
Original copper engraving with hand colour, published by Thomas Bassett & Richard Chiswell, printed in 1676. 390 x 510 mm.
With inset plans of Newport and Southampton.
Showing coat of arms of some prominent families of the Isle of Wight.
John Speed is arguably the most famous of all the British cartographers. His Theatre Of The Empire Of Great Britaine, first published in 1611, was the first atlas to cover all of Great Britain whilst his later work of 1627, Prospect Of The Most Famous Parts Of The World was the first world atlas to be published by an Englishman. In his county maps Speed updated the work of Saxton and Norden adding his own innovations such as inset town plans and views of local landmarks resulting in maps that were not only the most accurate and informative of the day but also the most decorative.