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The environs of London in 1746. Impressive sixteen sheet set.
John Rocque was of French Huguenot stock from Monosque in Provence. The London he eventually settled in, was an expanding city which had grown unchecked and by the 1730s a new map was needed.
Harry Margary, a Senior Civil Scientific Engineer for the Admiralty and self-professed inventor, produced this full-size facsimile of the famous John Rocque map in 1971. The original 18th century map never joined properly due to paper shrinkage in the printing process and only the constituent copper plates joined. For this lithographically printed version Margary altered some of the edges so the maps would join and significantly cleaned up the image area.
Although Rocque is always given credit as the surveyor of this map, there were many others involved. The idea to do a new survey came from the engraver George Vertue but he and Rocque could not come to an agreement. Rocque then entered into an agreement with another engraver, John Pine, to survey the central area of London and Westminster. For this, Rocque was not in charge but was employed by Pine as his surveyor. While this project was in progress, Rocque decided to include the country around London to a distance of ten miles.
The London and environs map, published in the same year, 1746, was engraved by Richard Parr with Rocque himself as the publisher and taking the full profits for himself. The map was published in 16 sheets covering an area of 247 square miles in all. After the survey was completed and the 16 sheets drafted, Rocque issued a prospectus inviting “…Persons who have a mind to encourage the work…” to subscribe the costs of engraving and printing. The subscription list, containing 365 names and included some very prominent people, including The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cumberland, the Lord Mayor of London, 15 dukes and an assortment of other nobles. The 16 sheets were framed in an elaborate border into the bottom part of which was inset a large cartouche carrying a dedication to the Earl of Burlington of Chiswick House