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The OAHS journal Oxoniensia is now available online. All but the most recent five volumes are freely available under a Creative Commons licence; the most recent volumes are available to subscribers.

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Old Maps of Oxford: Another Look at Agas, Loggan and Whittlesey

Lecturer: John Hawkins
Date: February 20th 2018
Time: 5.30pm – 6.30pm
Place: Rewley House

Everyone familiar with old maps of Oxford knows that in 1578 the university paid a land surveyor, Ralph Agas, for a map of Oxford. Except that they didn’t. The payment, of £20, was for a descriptione, which is much more likely to translate as a survey than a map. It is also known that the engraver of the ‘Agas’ map, when it was finally published in 1588, was Augustine Ryther. Except that this isn’t what the inscription says. On other maps Ryther usually signed himself with his name followed by ‘del et sculp’ (drawn and engraved), or ‘sculpserunt’; on this one he only used ‘delineavit’. The Agas/Ryther map of Oxford is not the only one subject to a number of intriguing questions, with uncertainties surrounding the later maps of David Loggan and Robert Whittlesey. This talk will discuss some of the questions relating to these three maps.

John Hawkins has been interested in engraved maps and architectural prints of Oxford since the 1970s, when he was an undergraduate at St Edmund Hall. He is now researching for a DPhil on ‘Images of Oxford, 1191 to 1759’, and has had academic papers published on the rarely described Duc de Chaulnes map of Oxford in the British Library (Imago Mundi, 2015) and the Wenceslaus Hollar maps of Oxford (Oxoniensia, 2014).

Rewley House

The Society's speaker meetings and committee meetings are held in Rewley House, Oxford (marked R).

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There are metered parking spaces on the west and north sides of Wellington Square. More spaces are normally available on the west side of St Giles where it joins Woodstock Road. From here it is only a short walk down Little Clarendon Street and across Wellington Square to Rewley House.

Parking in Wellington Square is charged until 6.30p.m. and costs £3.00 for up to one hour and £5.00 for up to two. Park and Ride buses from Water Eaton, Pear Tree and Redbridge stop at the top of St Giles, a short distance from Rewley House.


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Oxfordshire Architectural and Historical Society is a registered charity, registration number 259055.

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