Speed’s map of Denmark
By SPEED, John , [1676]

The Kingdome of Denmarke Performed by I. S.

Europe Scandinavia
  • 作者: SPEED, John
  • 出版地: [London]
  • 出版商: are to be sold by Tho: Bassett in Fleet Street and Ric: Chiswell in St. Pauls Churchyard
  • 发布日期: [1676].
  • 物理描述: Double-page engraved map.
  • 方面: 400 by 520mm. (15.75 by 20.5 inches).
  • 库存参考: 21924


A map of ‘the Kingdome of Denmarke’, comprising modern-day Denmark, and parts of Sweden and Germany, from the 1676 edition of the first atlas compiled and published by an Englishman, Speed’s ‘Prospect’. The upper border contains views of major cities, including Copenhagen and Hamburg, with the arms of Christian, King of Denmark, at the centre, and portrait medallions of Christian IV and of his son and heir, Frederick, on either side. Along each side are illustrated figures wearing regional costumes.

Accompanying text in English, ‘The Description of the Kingdom of Denmark’, is printed on the reverse.

John Speed (1552-1629) was the outstanding cartographer of his age. By trade a merchant tailor, but by proclivity a historian, it was the patronage of Sir Fulke Greville, poet and statesman, that allowed him to pursue this interest in earnest. His ‘Theatre of Great Britain’, first published in 1611 or 1612, was the first large-scale printed atlas of the British Isles. The ‘Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World’, from which the present work is drawn, appeared in 1627, bound with the ‘Theatre’, and is the first world atlas compiled by an Englishman to be published in England. Engraved in Amsterdam, many of the maps are anglicized versions of works by Dutch makers in distinctive carte-à-figure style, featuring borders with figures in local costume and city views.

This map is from the 1676 edition of the ‘Prospect’, published by Thomas Bassett and Richard Chiswell. While not as rare as the earlier publications, this edition is perhaps the most important, given that it is the first to include the nine new maps: among them, Virginia and Maryland, Barbados, and Russia. It is also the last time that the ‘Prospect’ was printed as an atlas.


  1. Shirley [Atlases], T.SPE-2f.