65 R Butters 1803


Butters (fl.1782-1803) was a publisher and bookseller first at 79 Fleet St. and later in Fetter Lane, London. He took over the Political Magazine in October 1789, his imprint replacing that of Murray. Most of the county maps produced for this publication between 1787 and 1790 were engraved by John Lodge (52).

Besides these maps, Butters was also responsible for publishing a series of smaller maps that appeared in his An Atlas of England, (8vo, 40 maps) printed and published in 1803. An interesting feature of many of the maps is that they are drawn with north at the foot of the map, including the map of England. The map of Devon is also unusual in that the map is oriented with east to the top with lettering to be read holding the map this way up. Although very similar to other miniature maps of the time they may be identified from the fact that all, except Norfolk and Northamptonshire, have the title below the map. Only about forty place names are given and few roads shown. The map is very inaccurate: on the north coast only Hartland is shown and Barnstaple, Bideford and Ilfracombe are all missing. Combe Martin is shown near Swimbridge, and was probably in error for South Molton. Many other towns are misplaced or named in error, eg Bampton is written inside Somerset in place of Dulverton. It is almost as though Butters' engraver deliberately turned Cary upside down but then proceeded to confuse the names and positions of various towns.

There is no trace as to the engraver of the maps. A compass was added to most counties for the second edition in 1805 but not to Devon. In 1803 and 1804 the maps were also used by William Green to illustrate his Picture of England.

Size 120 x 85 mm.                                                                                                                                                            Scale (15 = 19 mm).


1. 1803    An Atlas of England Printed & Sold by R Butters, No 22 Fetter Lane, Fleet Street.  
    London. R Butters. (1803). CCCX, C.
    The Picture of England illustrated with correct colour’d Maps of the Several Counties. In two volumes. By William Green. Vol. 1 London: Printed for Hatchard Book-seller to his Majesty, Picadilly.  
    London. J Hatchard. 18031, 1804.     - ; CCCXVIII, BL, W, RGS.
    An Atlas of England  
    London. R Butters. (1805).    BL.

[1] The only copy known has been broken up. The title-page read: The Picture of England ... By the Author of the Spirit of English History. London. J Hatchard. 1803.