A ribbon or strip map showing the route from Bagshot to Salisbury via Southampton, from a road atlas, ‘Roads through England Delineated’ by John Senex and published by John Bowles and Son in London in 1757.
The map is laid out in much the same way as we now expect a digital map to unroll down a screen and shows only the direct road. Turnings are marked as are bridges and major towns and settlements. Other topographical features that might aid the traveller to navigate are hills, indicated by a simple drawing, and clumps of forest. The direction of travel is shown by a compass bearing showing the four points of the compass and the north as a fleur de lys.
Ribbon maps of this sort were published as small format road atlases of a convenient size to be carried in a pocket or travelling bag. As the Industrial Revolution progressed and more people began to travel for the purposes of trade and then for pleasure the popularity of guide books and atlases increased, especially among the educated and wealthier classes.
Southampton at this time was not only a major sea port but a spa town where visitors could take the waters and enjoy the pleasures of the seaside.
The map was printed in one colour, so any other colours had to be added by hand. This map has the road shown in yellow, settlements picked out in red and the coastline in blue.
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