(Hatton, Edward)

A new view of London ; or, an ample account of that city, in two volumes, or eight sections. Being a more particular description thereof than has hitherto been known to be published of any city in the world (etc).

London, printed for R.Chiswell (and others) 1708.

Reference: 15383
Price: £480 [convert currency]

Full Description

2 vols. 8vo. Engraved frontispiece with arms of City of London (this backed with early twentieth-century paper), (32) + xlii (pp xxxi-xxxii misbound after p.xviii) + 352pp, with folding printed table bound after p.xxx ; engraved folding frontispiece (with arms of the twelve principal livery companies of the City of London), printed title leaf, pp 353-824, with folding engraved plate of arms of the remaining livery companies bound in after p.592 (this repaired for a marginal tear). Early twentieth century quarter morocco, cloth sides. First volume lacks the two folding engraved plans of London called for in the “advertisement to the book-binder” on p.(32), and is slightly browned throughout, with stains affecting upper part of pages of preface and of first six pages of text proper, and with lighter stains affecting upper part of pp 333-352. Second volume generally in good, clean condition. The Birmingham Assay Office Library copy, recently de-accessioned, with their small circular ownership stamps at the foot of the front free endpapers but with no other library markings.

The first comprehensive reference book on the cities of London and Westminster to be published after the Great Fire of London in 1665. Its author, not identified in the volume’s text, was Edward Hatton, a land surveyor by occupation, and the particular value to architectural historians of these two substantial volumes lies in his up-to-date descriptions of each of London’s many churches, the majority of them rebuilt and redecorated during the forty year period since the Great Fire. He also provides descriptions of recently erected funeral monuments in the churches concerned, and briefer descriptions of the Tower of London, the halls of the City of London’s livery companies, and notable individual buildings elsewhere in London and Westminster, including Westminster Hall, the Houses of Parliament, Buckingham House and Montague House. The first volume also incorporates an extensive and useful London street directory, incorporating not merely streets proper but also “courts, alleys, rows, rents, yards, and inns”. Otherwise there are extensive lists of contemporary office holders in the service of the government or of other public bodies, a catalogue of the natural history objects then on display in the Royal Society’s premises in Gresham College, and much other matter besides. Regrettably, the present copy lacks the two engraved plans of London which should appear in the first volume, and the first volume, although otherwise complete, is rather browned and stained, but Hatton’s book is nonetheless a really significant item in the published literature on London, as explained by Bridget Cherry, “Edward Hatton’s New View of London”, Architectural History 44, 2001, 96-105. The copy of the second volume includes the ten-page supplement (pp 815-824), incorporating additions and corrections by the author, “during the time this book was in the press”.