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John Speed: Denbigh Shire

Map: WCTS1364
Cartographer: John Speed
Title: Denbigh Shire
Date: 1614
Published: London
Width: 21 inches / 54 cm
Height: 15 inches / 39 cm
Map ref: WCTS1364
The presence of so many distinctive hills on the map is indicative that this is the major region to which the term “Welsh Valleys” applies. Of particular note is the Vale of Clwyd, a small valley noted for its bountiful soil as well as its natural beauty. The map also notes the stark contrast between the heavily populated East and the sparsely populated West.

The map is relatively lightly decorated. The upper right corner bears a city plan of Denbigh, which starkly emphasizes its position on the side of a hill. Two coats of arms are positioned on the lower two corners while the title cartouche is in the centre. The small patch of sea on the upper left, illustrates a ship, a sea monster and large armoured figure riding a sea horse, possibly a sea god.

Speed signs his name on the lower right and Hondius the engraver on the lower centre.

English text on verso. Image available on request.