Catalogues Received
Advertiser Index
Reader Services
We have decided to suspend our diary feature as too time consuming: instead we highly recommend the following listings, all compiled by John W. Docktor
Cartographic Calendar of 
Events & Exhibitions
Washington Map Society Diary

Catalogues Received
Printed Catalogues
Richard B. Arkway, Inc
25 September
Catalogue 5
On-line Catalogues
Tooley Adams
4 May 2001
Recent Acquisitions, including maps by De Jode, Blaeu, Ortelius & SDUK
J.A.L. Franks
9 April 2001
Spring Web catalogue
Lee Jackson
5 April 2001
Revised web catalogue, including an early Moll atlas. 
Richard B. Arkway, Inc
2 April 2001
Revised web catalogue, with Sanson's important mao of North America, 1650
Altea Maps & Books
2 March 2001
Web Catalogue 8,  Spring 2001, including Scolari's Venie and Bowen's Australia

Please direct any replies to MapForum.Com
[email protected]
Any unpublished letters will be forwarded to the original correspondent
Dear Sir,

Browsing through issue no.7 of Map Forum I found a letter from one of your readers asking for help with identification of a person named  "Rhedinger" from "Vratisl". 
Let me correct your explanation: "Vratisl" stands for "Vratislavia", not "Bratislava" as you suggest.

Please note that Ortelius' atlases include maps on which Rhedinger is mentioned. These are:

SILESIAE TYPVS | Descriptus et editus a Martino Heil= | wig Neisense, et Nobili viro Nicolao | Rhedinger dedicatus. Anno. 1561 (in  Theatrum Orbis Terrarum...)
SILESIAE | TYPVS | A Martino Helwigio Nißense | descriptus, et | Nobili doctoque viro Domino | Nicolao Rhedingero ded. (in  Additamentum V Theatri Orbis Terrarum...)

In his atlases Ortelius copied map drawn by Martin Helwig of Nysa or Neisse and dated on 1561 (the single one existing copy of this map is preserved in Badische Landesbibliothek in Karlsruhe, Germany). Both Helwig's map and later copies by Ortelius are dedicated to Rhedinger who endowed Helwig with money for his work. Nicolaus Rhedinger was a noble man from Vratislavia (in Latin), for centuries capital of Silesia, once also known as Presla, Bressla (-w), or Breslau. Today known as Wroclaw the city is capital of Poland's Lower Silesia. 

Zbigniew Paprotny
Rybnik, Poland
The Editor: Many thanks! I've corrected my original reply and will try to mind my "V's and "B's"!

Dear Editor

I am a new collector and I am having trouble finding a copy of Margaret Palmer's "the Mapping Of Bermuda A bibliography of Printed Maps & charts 1548-1970", London:Holland Press Cartographica,1983.  I would appreciate any help that you can provide..

Kenneth Evans
The Editor:  A number of our advertisers offer reference books for sale, including Map Collector Publications.  Alternatively  if any reader has a copy he wishes to sell we will pass on any offer.

In the meantime please look at our Issue 3 for our own checklist of maps of Bermuda.


Dear Editor
I have an old Rand McNally world map and I'm trying to figure out the copyright date.  I place it maybe late 1940s or early 1950s, but there is no date on it.  The only real identifying number is NYC901.  I check the Rand McNally web site, but they offer no catalogue.  Can you help or point me in the right direction?

Thanks a lot,

Dan Rice 
The Editor:  We have received two letters concerning Rand McNally maps, the other from Kirk Brown, who had contacted Rand McNally and was told they no longer had an archive.

The easiest way to date a modern map is to look for boundary changes, one of the more obvious being the post-war division of Germany. I do not know all the possibilities, but I think an afternoon with a good encyclopedia would be more fun that just being told the date!

Dear Editor

Just wondering if you are able to tell me if these names are cartographers or what they may be - Guglielmo Sansone,  Giacomo Rossi,  Giorgio Widman,  Giacomo Cantelli.and V. Mariotti. I have a few things I am trying to research yet do not know where to start.

The Editor:  You appear to have a map by Giacomo de Rossi,  a publisher working in Rome at the end of the seventeenth century, whose principal atlas was the 'Mercurio Geografico'. "Guglielmo Sansone" is the Italian version of Guillaume Sanson (d.1703), a French cartographer whose maps were used as sources by de Rossi. Both Giorgio Widman and Vincenzo Mariotti were engravers employed by de Rossi.

Dear Editor

Would it be possible to provide a reference to a website that goes into detail on mapmaking?  I recently purchased an Abraham Ortelius map as a gift but am a complete novice at the art of cartography.  I have been unable to find any websites that describe the process as it was in the 16th century, and was hoping you would be able to provide some pointers.

Jessica Chen
The Editor:   We have been running a series of "Beginner's Guides" at MapForum.Com. Please take a look, and if you still have questions please let us know. It is possible that we would answer your query on this page, or if it is of sufficent interest devote a whole "guide" to it.

Dear Editor

I have ? metal picture like your image of the Speed of Europe. Can you tell me what it is and  information on it? It looks old. I cannot find any numbers on it. 

B Minn 

Dear Editor

We have a map print of Cardiganshire which John Speed originally did in 1610. Is there any way you can guide us as to when the print was made? The map paper is a faded yellow brown colour with one ink colour being a blue black, the map has the town of Cardigan on the top right corner, has Hondius  as the engraver, Sudbury and Humble as the printers. When were the last prints made?.

Also the map has the word 'Hundred' written in quite a few place, can you please tell us what this means?.

Martin and Penny Edwards
New Zealand
The Editor:   Speed's maps were originally engraved on a sheet of copper which was used to print onto paper. If by a very remote chance you had one of these metal plates the image would be in reverse to compensate for the transferal of the image. If the image is not reversed what you have is a modern attempt to make a decorative item by imitating the original plate but keeping the image of Europe recognisable. These have little or no intrinsic value.

Sudbury & Humble were the original publishers of Speed's maps, first edition 1611-12. Although the copperplates were in use until the 1770s the names of Sudbury & Humble were removed by 1646 to be replaced by later publisher's names, most commonly Bassett & Chiswell for the 1676 edition. However Speed maps are among the most reproduced, and your description of "faded yellow brown colour" suggests a 1960s fascimile on imitation parchment, with a crisp, crackly feel. Check there is a platemark (the indentation around the map where the paper overlaps the area compressed by the printing plate), text on the back (usually English but Latin for the 1616 edition), and a centre fold from where the map was bound into the atlas. However these suggestions are not definite, and the ideal way to get the map authenticated is by showing it to an experienced dealer. 

Hundreds: In England the term hundred is applied to an ancient territorial division intermediate between the villa and the County.  Such subordinate districts were also known in different parts of the country by other names, for example Wapentake, Rape or Ward

The origin of the term is uncertain.  One theory, and perhaps the most plausible, is that the hundred denoted first a group of one hundred families, and then the area of land which these families occupied, to support themselves.  A second alternative, not inconsistent with the first, is that the hundred was a term of measurement, denoting one hundred hides of land.  There is good reason to belief that the hide was originally seen as the area of land needed to support one family. 

In a pre-Conquest document, now known as the Burghal Hidage, the number of hides in all the counties are multiples of a hundred and, that in many cases the multiples agree with the number of hundreds ascribed to the county in the Domesday Book. 

However, the hundreds of Devon seem never to have contained a hundred hides. Both in Devon, and in some of the other western Counties, the hundreds are purely geographical divisions, to which a varying number of hides could be assigned. 

In the Middle Ages, the principal function of the hundred  revolved around its court of justice. 

The Wapentake was the principal administrative division of Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Rutland and Leicestershire, equivalent to a hundred.  The name is Danish, and found only in those parts of England settled by the Danes, the ‘Danelaw.’ The origin of the name is literal - from ‘weapon-take’: an assembly attended by the men of a particular area, to which they would take their weapons, and this came to denote also the area from which the men of a particular assembly were drawn.  The purpose of the ‘weapon-take’ was partly judicial and partly military, with voting carried on by the raising of weapons. 

Dear Editor

I am looking for information on a "John Speed"   map, - Suffolke   described and divided into Hundreds, the situation of the fayre towne Ipswich shewed, with the arms of the most noble families .    1610

The Editor:   We published a biography of Speed in our Issue 2 which gives a background to the production of his county maps, including his sources. If your interest is more about Suffolk I suggest you try searching for Suffolk libraries, museums and historical asssociations.

Dear Editor: 

In response to the article on Atlantis in Issue 11, I would like to point out that in 1998 I wrote "Imagining Atlantis" (Knopf), in which I discuss many of the earlier theories about  the "Lost Continent."

Richard Ellis
The Editor:   We've added your book to the bibliography.

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The Editors welcome enquiries from readers on the identification of maps and / or for biographical information relating to particular maps

These enquiries are deemed to be for publication, and will be dealt with only on that basis. The Editors will not normally reply separately to enquiries.

Therefore, all enquiries should be accompanied by a good quality illustration of the map, JPEG FORMAT, 50KB AT MOST, suitable for publication, with dimensions, and, if necessary, transcription of relevant titles, imprints and so on.

Enquiries should be restricted to a single topic, and be suitable for publication.

The Editors will not advise on matters of value, but may be able to recommend suitable avenues for vendors or appraisals. 


The Editors are currently working on a companion dictionary to the history of cartography, and hope to be in a position to be able to issue draft sections in 2000, and would be pleased to be informed of obscure, or little-known, map-makers, engravers, authors, publishers or so on.


The Editors have access to a substantial photograph library, principally of black and white images, but also colour transparencies, and would be pleased to deal with enquiries for reproduction and publication

It may be possible to supply copies of the images featured in this journal, subject to copyright restrictions.