Blaeu Atlas of Scotland, 1654

Map Detail
Name: Blaeu, Joan, 1596-1673  
Title: Privilegie. Andreae Melvini Scotiae Topographia  
Pagination: [6v-7r]
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Translation of text:


The States General of the United Netherlands have consented, agreed and ...., with these consent, agree and ...., to Johan Blaeu, that he for the time of twenty-five following years, only in these United Netherlands, and countries, ... and cities allied with them, shall be able to print, publish and sell all the maps and descriptions, both general and particular, of the respective provinces of Scotland and nearby islands, made by Timothy Pont, Robert and James Gordon, acquired by the aforesaid Johan Blaeu with great cost and ..., and engraved on copper ...; forbidding all and sundry ... inhabitants of the aforesaid United Netherlands, countries, ... and cities of them, within the aforesaid time of twenty-five following years, to print or reprint, publish and sell the aforesaid maps and descriptions in whole or in part, or if reprinted elsewhere to bring them within the ... lands, on the ... of all the reprinted copies, and in addition of a sum of three hundred ..., to be ... of one third for the behoof of the official who shall ..., the second third for the behoof of the poor, and the remaining third for the behoof of the aforesaid Johan Blaeu: on condition however, that the same Johan Blaeu shall be bound on his ... ... to ... and obtain ... from the Province or Provinces, where he shall wish to print, ... and sell the aforesaid maps and descriptions. Given at the meeting of the ... States General, in The Hague, on the tenth of June, 1654.

B. VAN GENT Viscount
By order of the same

With ... of the ... ... ... States of Holland and West Friesland in ... form, under the small seal of the same lands, the 16th of June, 1654, and by order of the same States ...

Herbert van Beaumont


If I compose this old man's poem for you, still a boy, Frederick; if with quite light hand and brief book I describe your ancestors' seat and the Kingdom of Alba, both cut by straits and unconquered under one King, which your Father seals with his sceptre and preserves for you as your due, will there be any grateful duty to son and to father, will your royal father and the fame and virtue of your forebears stir you at all to ancient virtue and manly spirits? Your cherishing father promises this to himself about you: the great ardour, as of sharp lightning, of Mind and Genius pulls in this direction. Nor is there less close expectation and renown in the neighbouring Kingdom, which eagerly solicits you as King for its people: but if poetry grants us our Apollo, I shall set it out in these verses and make it clear in bright light with the famed culture and character of the places. You yourself will in them traverse with me the green valleys of Caledonia and Grampian and the blooming river-banks; where, as the gentle chorus exercises in a long row, the Naiads shine spread out in the glassy waters; nay more, to traverse with me the native [?] of the surrounding Ocean and the straits filled with frequent winds; do not doubt, I shall lead you out far from the ship and the dry edge, and soon lead you back safe without Mars.

The time will come, and the day is not far off, when you too, resplendent in your country's arms and cutting through the sea in your fleet, will be lavishly kissed by the Ocean favouring the reverenced feet, and it will slavishly spread all the wave's flow and the storm's roar beneath your feet, and submit all fierce monsters to your chains.

Come then, an end to delay, take up this gentle practice which we follow, which paints words with sweet charm, whereby it is right to submit barbarous names to the yoke of law; and with light stride run over the highest summits, soon to be traversed again by your step and strengthened by your gesture, unless you shun the fine sounds and humble muses. I shall never hold you here with deceit or long digression. Ah, come Divine Father: come Lord God: go with favouring foot to build dominion for the mutually united Britains.

High in the western sea, a land separated from Europe, ennobled by the Muses of the Greeks and Roman blood, productive of men and with rich soil, famed for its name and admired for its deeds, stands Britain. Germany lies with opposing land to the east, Spain to the west and Ireland, France to the south; at the northern stars it is pounded by the Hyperborean deep. Like a second Sicily it is formed with a triangular shape: so with three outstanding promontories it rises in varied directions; with Kent to the east, Land's End towards the west, Orcas to the icy north, once seeming in part like a two-edged axe, in part like a lion, it formerly separated under the two summits of a double Kingdom: England goes to the south axis, Scotland to the North, later however to come together under one Northern King, your father and you, Henry, soon to be second to your father; extremely blessed if it recognises its own good fortune, which was lowered to the deep pole but is raised below the stars by the peoples.

The Kingdom of the English, once a Roman province, is divided into four parts by four rivers: between the Dee and the Severn stands Wales, crushed in three parts into valleys; the part which faces France between the Severn and the Thames rises into mountains; the third part is what is between the Thames and the Humber; lastly the fourth is from the Humber and the river Dee to the Tweed and the Solway. And these four rivers water the kingdom just as once at the Elysian plains and the green swards of the groves of the fortunate, the twice two floods of Tigris and Euphrates and also of Phison and Gihon bedaubed the fields with their sacred waters for the blessed.

The Scottish Kingdom is divided from the English Kingdom to the rising by the River Tweed, where the sun stands in the middle by the Cheviot mountain, thence where the sun sets into the waves the river Esk and also the river Solway slip past a modern wall. Within these bounds of the Kingdom from eastern shore to western shore, the clear order of the regions is this: the Merse lies next to the river Tweed on the left, famed for fruitful fields, and as its guard the castle of Berwick stands on the extreme boundary and at risk from doubtful warfare: the city and land belong to the Scots, but are now held by the English. The estuary of the Forth bathes the Merse at the rays of dawn, at mid-day England near to its spoil marks its end. From here and here, poured into the Tweed, lies Teviotdale; the high Cheviot with its name from the river divides this from the English. From here to the north are Liddesdale, and Ewesdale, and Eskdale, regions taking their names from the rivers Liddel, Ewes, Esk; last is Annandale from the river Annan, which takes it next to the river Solway and flows into the Irish Sea. The estuary of the Forth closes Lothian from the rising of the sun:

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