A striking 1688 decorative map of England and Wales by Frederick De Wit, meticulously divided into counties and featuring a captivating cartouche with the coat of arms of England, surrounded by sea fairies and dolphins.
This beautifully crafted map, published in Amsterdam, offers a detailed representation of England and Wales during the late 17th century. Each county is carefully outlined and colored, providing a clear and accurate visualization of the region. The map's attention to detail and precision makes it a valuable resource for understanding the geography and administrative divisions of the time.
The Latin names of the counties are given, reflecting the scholarly and intellectual milieu of the period.
De Wit (1629 ca.-1706) was a mapmaker and mapseller who was born in Gouda but who worked and died in Amsterdam. He moved to the city in 1648, where he opened a printing operation under the name of The Three Crabs; later, he changed the name of his shop to The White Chart. From the 1660s onward, he published atlases with a variety of maps; he is best known for these atlases and his Dutch town maps. After Frederik’s death in 1706, his wife Maria ran the shop for four years before selling it. Their son, Franciscus, was a stockfish merchant and had no interest in the map shop. At the auction to liquidate the de Wit stock, most of the plates went to Pieter Mortier, whose firm eventually became Covens & Mortier, one of the biggest cartography houses of the eighteenth century.