Speed 1610 & 1611


 Insets. Cambridgshire. [London], J. Sudbury and G. Humbell, 1610 and Oxfordshire. [London], J. Sudbury and G. Humbell, 1611.

In his preface “to the well affected and favourable reader” of Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine (which includes these two sheets), John Speed admitted that he borrowed liberally from other cartographers (or as he phrased it, “I have put my Sickle into other mens Corne and have laid my Building upon other mens Foundations”). For these two maps, he adapted the county maps of Christopher Saxton, the city map of Cambridge (1592) by John Hamond, and the city map of Oxford (1578) by Ralph Agas; for the ornamental features, he employed stylistic features that he particularly admired in Dutch mapmakers (including Jodocus Hondius, who engraved the plates). Here the coats-of-arms of the various colleges of Oxford and Cambridge embellish the side and bottom panels.