Local maps and plans from medieval England /
edited by R.A. Skelton and P.D.A. Harvey.
Oxford : Clarendon Press ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1986.
1 atlas (xv, 376 p., [16] p. of plates) : maps (some col.) ; 38 cm.
More Details
Oxford : Clarendon Press ; New York : Oxford University Press, 1986.
cartographic mathematical data
Scales differ. --
general note
Limited edition of 500 copies.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1986-12:
Until his death in 1970, Skelton was the preeminent authority on the history of cartography. This study of early English cartography was the last to appear over his name. Although credit for the genesis and basic organization belongs to Skelton, Harvey (University of Durham) did most of the editorial work and wrote the introductory chapters. In 30 essays, 20 experts examine medieval English local maps (those produced before 1500) and their associated texts to ascertain what each map shows, and when and why it was drawn. The overall aim is to see whether early English cartography fits the pattern of cartographical development elsewhere. Perhaps half the maps would fit our modern idea of a map, the others being mere sketches or diagrams, demonstrating one of the book's theses: that the map was a concept alien to medieval Englishmen, who thought of geographical descriptions in verbal rather than visual terms. Only in rare cases where words seemingly were not enough (e.g., to prove a point in a boundary dispute, to clarify claims to commons rights, to locate water conduits) did medieval authors attempt to draw maps. The scholarly apparatus of the book is impressive: each map is reproduced in black and white, accompanied by the appropriate section of a current Ordinance Survey map; previously published articles and reproductions are cited; texts are transcribed in full. Analyses of maps and texts are, for the most part, exemplary and exhaustive. Maps originally colored are reproduced in 16 full-color plates. Knowledge of medieval Latin is assumed, as texts are not translated. For upper-division undergraduate and graduate students.-B. McCorkle, Yale University
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, December 1986
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