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Britannia: Or A Chorographical Description Of Great Britain And Ireland, Together with the Adjacent Islands. Written in Latin By William Camden, Clarenceux, King at Arms: And Translated into English, with Additions and Improvements. The Second Edition. Revised, Digested, and Published, with large Additions, By Edmund Gibson, D. D. Rector of Lambeth; and now Bishop of Lincoln, and Dean of His Majesty's Chapel-Royal. Vol. I. (II.)

William Camden

RA Collection: Book

Record number



Uniform Title

[Britannia., English., Gibson., 1722.]


London:: Printed by Mary Matthews, for Awnsham Churchill, and Sold by William Taylor, in Pater-Noster-Row., MDCCXXII.

Physical Description

2 vols.; 438 mm. (Folio).

General Note

Vol. I: [66] p., cclxviii col., 696 col., frontis. (port.), 47 pl. (34 dble., 2 dble. and fold.): illus. The double pl. are all maps. - Vol. II: [2] p., col. 697-1526, [171] p., [16] pl. (15 dble.).


Vol. I: [Frontis., t.p., dedic.] - The Preface - Part of the Preface To the Former Edition; Setting forth the Names of the Persons who assisted therein - The Life Of Mr. Camden - Mr. Camden's Preface - Ad Lectorem - Books And Treatises Relating to the Antiquities Of England (Wales. Scotland. Ireland. Islands.) - Antoninus's Itinerary Through Britain, As it is compared by Mr. Burton with the several Editions - The General Heads, Of The Introduction, And Counties of England - [Text, with pl. On Britain and southern England]. - Vol. II: [T.p.] - [Text, with pl. On Wales, northern England] - The Union Of England And Scotland - Scotland [Text, with pl.] - Ireland [no pl.] - The Smaller Islands In The British Ocean [Text, with pl.] - Appendix. Annals of Ireland. History of the O-Neals, and their Rebellions in Ireland. Chronicle of the Kings of Man. - The Insertions Made by Dr. Holland, In his English Translation of Mr. Camden's Britannia - Index - Errata.

Responsibility Note

The frontispiece portrait of William Camden is signed as engraved by R. White. Many of the maps are captioned as by Robert Morden. Most carry the imprint of the sellers (Abel Swale, Awnsham Churchill, John Churchill), but no date.

The book is dedicated by the translator, Edmund Gibson, to the King (George I?).


G. Parry, The trophies of time English antiquarians of the seventeenth century (1995); S. Piggott, Ancient Britons and the antiquarian imagination (1989); S. Piggott, William Camden and the Britannia (1953).
ESTC, T144701

Summary Note

Camden's Britannia was first published in Latin in 1586, and in Gibson's English translation in 1695.

Most of the plates are maps of counties. Some plates, and most illustrations, show coins, inscriptions and antiquities.


An electronic reproduction of this edition was published in 2003 (Farmington Hills, Mich.: Thomson Gale). Microfilms were published in 1999 (Woodbridge, Conn.: Primary Source Media) and 1974 (New Haven, CT: Research Publications).


Acquired between 1769 and 1802. Recorded in RAA Library, Catalogue, 1802.

Copy Note

The maps are coloured by hand.

Binding Note

18th-century sheep, upper and lower covers having gilt-stamped panels; rebacked in 20th century, red and green spine-labels lettered 'Camden's Britannia Vol. I. (II.), spines lettered 'R.A.'

Name as Subject


Great Britain - Ireland - Description and travel - History - Maps - Antiquities
Pictorial works - Hand coloring - 18th century