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Martin Llewellyn's Atlas of the East (c. 1598)

(by Tony Campbell)


Expanded and amended version of a paper distributed at the Sixth International Conference on the History of Cartography,
Greenwich, London, 9 September 1975

A version of this webpage, as it was in mid-2009, was placed on the Kunstpedia site

Mostly written in 1975; placed on the web 8 May 2006
[illustrations added June 2008; and further additions December 2008-February 2009, & December 2016]

This text was never prepared for publication. A brief article based on the original paper appeared as: 'Atlas Pioneer', Geographical Magazine 48:3 (December 1975) pp.162-7. In addition, a set of print-outs from microfilm of all sixteen sheets is kept in the British Library Map Library (Maps 183.e.2). No further research was carried out since then but occasional pieces of information came to light over the intervening years and are inserted into the text below. A quick check via Google produced a few further pieces of information but there has been no systematic attempt at updating. The list of contemporary maps and charts with which Llewellyn's atlas was compared could certainly be expanded. It was not practicable to include the full place-name analysis here.

However, minor corrections have been made and some material (omitted from the original because of length) has been added. Such sections, and later additions, are indicated by { }. An extended passage has also been introduced from the Geographical Magazine article. The result is an unpolished text designed to set down all that has been discovered to date, with pointers for future research.

Because the atlas and this interpretation were never published - largely the result of an abortive attempt to produce a facsimile with commentary - Llewellyn's atlas has hardly been mentioned in print since 1975. It is hoped that this web-mounting exercise may reverse that neglect.

The 1975 text acknowledged the assistance of the librarian of Christ Church, Dr J.F.A. Mason, and the Archivist of St Bartholomew's Hospital, Dr Nellie J. Kerling. To those should be added thanks for the help on English charting of the period provided by Sarah Tyacke and to Katie Ormerod, Deputy Archivist of St Bartholomew's Hospital, for details about the crucial meeting in August 1597 (2009).

Use may be made of the text, with appropriate acknowledgement please, including the note of its creation date.

I would be happy to receive comments and corrections:  



Summary

In early 1969, on a visit to Oxford, I decided to call in at Christ Church, Oxford's largest college, in the hope that their library might contain some unusual cartographic material. What I found far exceeded my wildest expectations. Intrigued by an item described in their hand-written catalogue as, 'Maps - 18th century, English and Foreign', I asked to see what proved to be Martin Llewellyn's atlas of the East. It is my contention that this volume, which had lain unknown to map historians for over three and a half centuries, constitutes the earliest sea atlas by an Englishman, so far identified; and that it contains the earliest known English charts of the East. Its printed equivalent, the Oriental volume of the English Pilot, was not to appear for a further century. Indeed, no earlier sea atlas expressly designed for navigation in the East by a chartmaker of any nationality has yet been identified, although Portuguese world atlases would normally include a coverage of the East. It is beyond dispute that his atlas introduces a new and important chartmaker into the ranks of those working in late Elizabethan or early Jacobean England.

Llewellyn, Donors' Book

Martin Llewellyn's sons gave his sea atlas of the East to Christ Church, Oxford, in 1634 and it remains there to this day. The event is recorded in their Donors' Book

Llewellyn's atlas was donated to Christ Church in 1634 {though a former Librarian thought this event might have taken place anywhere in the period 1632-39, in which case Martin Jr's evident arrival in 1636 might be a possible alternative date} . The entry recording this gift states that it was "drawn in [his own] hand and according to his own observations", from which it seems that Llewellyn had himself travelled to the East. It can be shown that he was in one continuous occupation from 1597 until his death in 1634, as Renter, and two years later, Steward, of St Bartholomew's Hospital, London. He could not, therefore, have left England on an extended voyage after 1597. Corroboration that he had indeed drawn the atlas himself comes from the clear evidence of the same hand on some estate plans prepared for the Hospital, for one of which there is a record of payment to him. The investigation which this paper describes has uncovered the fact that the first Dutch voyage to the East (1595-7), under Cornelis de Houtman, led to the introduction of an entirely new range of names for the East Indies, and particularly for Java. The 32 names added to its north coast include today's capital, Jakarta and Surabaja, now the second- largest city. The source for these can be identified with confidence as Pedro de Tayda, a local Portugese pilot living in Bantam. De Tayda was able, in the course of the three weeks between the arrival of the Dutch and his own murder as a consequence of that contact, to pass on his cartographic knowledge of the East Indies. Llewellyn's atlas includes many of what can be recognised for the first time as place-names deriving from de Tayda.

Only the voyage undertaken by Houtman could have been completed by the time Llewellyn took up his stewardship and, simultaneously, have provided his Java toponymy. The likelihood is that he himself was one of the eighty-nine survivors of that expedition (in which case, as a foreigner, he might well have disguised his name) and that his atlas represents knowledge of the period immediately prior to the foundation of the East India Company in 1600 and of the Dutch equivalent (VOC) in 1602. Among leads suggested for possible future research are the connections between the chronically debt-ridden Llewellyn and various wealthy and influential individuals, including some (his brother among them) involved with the earliest history of the East India Company.

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Physical make-up of the atlas

Llewellyn's atlas is large folio and consists of sixteen charts drawn in black ink and five colours on vellum {four of the charts were wholly or partially reproduced in the Geographical Magazine article and are repeated here}. Each measures approximately 65 x 92 cm (26 x 36 in) and, while folded, they have not been attached to the binding by guards stuck to a central fold, as might have been expected, but have been sewn in at the left edge. Preceding the charts is a sheet of paper (formed of two joined pieces). This has been ruled into four compartments; the upper pair is blank [perhaps intended for a title and dedication] and the lower pair has been used for a descriptive title and a list of the charts. From this we can establish both that the atlas is complete and that the preliminary leaf and the charts are in the same hand.

Contents page

The list of charts in Llewellyn's own hand

{Attempts were made to identify the watermarks in the title sheet at the front and the blank end-paper at the end. While they appear similar, and each is made up of joined sheets of the same paper, the marks are different front and back. Neither watermark could be found in Bricquet or Heawood although there were similar marks (French or Italian) from the later 16th century. The closest match (on the end-paper) was with Heawood 2133, reported from the 1616 edition of Speed.}

The atlas is preserved in a full calf binding, die-stamped on both covers. It is undoubtedly the original binding and is typical of English work of the early 17th century. {The fact that a few of the charts have had a part of their border trimmed away confirms that the charts were bound up after they were drawn. However, the title sheet, neatly ruled into quarters, whose precise size depended on that of the bound volume, must have been completed after binding had taken place. There are presumably four stages to be considered: the rough compilation of the charts, the fair drawing of those charts, the binding up of the volume, and the writing out of the title. These events could have been separated by years. }

The volume is in as good a condition as could be expected; there is no trace of any water-staining that might point to use at sea.

The sixteen charts extend from the Cape of Good Hope to the Far East, including Japan, the Philippines, the Marianas and the north-western part of New Guinea. {The reference in the Christ Church Donors' Book [see Analytical methods] to 'partem Americae peruanae', might be taken to indicate that part of America was included. Rather this states that the charts extend to China and then 'towards South America' - somewhat misleading given that Japan is the eastern limit}. They are projectionless plane charts with latitude scales, and with slight overlap from one chart to the next. From the duplicated sections, it is evident that the coastal outlines were traced from a common model. Repeated names, however, were treated in the cavalier fashion of the period and frequently differ from one chart to the next - for example Tornoall and Toronal, Tydor and Tichor, Maycan and Macan [charts 10 & 16].

[A slightly amended passage extracted from 'Atlas Pioneer', Geographical Magazine 48:3 (December 1975), pp. 165-7 - any extract from the indented section below should be separately acknowledged]

Until the first Dutch and English fleets appeared in the Indian Ocean at the very end of the 16th century the Portuguese flag was the only European one seen in the East Indies. From this commercial monopoly it followed that the Portuguese hydrographers were the only ones who had access to first-hand information about the islands and harbours beyond the Cape. Their jealously guarded charts - always kept in manuscript and never printed - played an essential part in keeping out intruders. Portuguese charts of the 16th century varied considerably but they were usually on a relatively small scale, ranging only from eight to ten millimetres for 10 degrees of latitude. Llewellyn's charts so far break with this tradition as to quadruple the scale to thirty-eight millimetres for 10 degrees [very approximately 1:3 million]. Also unusual is the fact that this scale is constant throughout his atlas. The sixteen charts that Llewellyn needed to cover the known world east of the Cape of Good Hope normally fill only five, much smaller sheets, in the typical world atlases produced by the most prolific of the Portuguese chartmakers, Fernão Vaz Dourado [for all matters relating to Portuguese output see PMC].

If Llewellyn's atlas was constructed about 1598, and this seems the most likely date in the face of the evidence available at the moment, we have to look for a Portuguese source for those areas not affected by the first Dutch voyage, or else admit that his work is original. If the use of a scale not paralleled in the entire surviving Portuguese output hinted that there might be difficulty in finding the model for his charts, the further the investigation proceeded the clearer it became that Llewellyn's source, whatever it might have been, has not survived. The outlines he gives to the islands in the East Indies, for example, find no precise equivalent in Portuguese work.

But more striking still are the peculiarities of his style, for these serve to mark him out, not only from the Portuguese and Dutch chart makers working at the turn of the century but also from his English contemporaries.

Chartmaking in England was still in its infancy during Elizabeth I's reign. But there were a number of people working close to the Thames to serve the needs of English mariners: John Daniel, Thomas Hood, Thomas Lupo, Robert Norman, Richard Poulter, Nicholas Reynolds and Gabriel Tatton. One of these, John Daniel, was to found a school of chartmakers, all of whom were apprenticed in succession into the Drapers' Company of the City of London, thus perpetuating certain distinctive features of style [Campbell; Smith; Tyacke]. Had Llewellyn been apprenticed to any of the known Elizabethan chartmakers, or even taught on an informal basis (since he was evidently a 'gentleman' rather than an artisan), we could have expected some traces of their style to recur in his work. Instead, it is so totally different from all of them that it seems inconceivable he could have been taught by any of the chartmakers already known to us. Yet the method by which he constructed his charts and the way he conveys his hydrographical information show him to have been in the mainstream of the portolan chart tradition.

To start with, his palette is unusual. The five brightly preserved colours which he used include a surprising mauve and untypical tones of red, yellow, green and blue. Then there is the continuous border, repeated in the surrounds to his scale bars. This device, ancient Greek in origin, seems intended to represent a chain of beads. It is found also on the engraved maps of Ortelius and Mercator, as well as on Waghenaer's printed marine charts [1584 onwards], which Llewellyn would presumably have seen. But what distinguishes Llewellyn's work from these others, and allows us to consider it to a certain extent as his signature, is that his outer border regularly alternates seven round beads with each elongated one, where the engraved forms used a maximum of three or four. This particular device has yet to be spotted on any other manuscript chart.

'Cape Guarda Fuy'

The scale borders with their foliate terminals and the unusual north-pointer to the compass rose are distinctive features of Llewellyn's work.

Then there are the decorative scale borders with their foliate terminals, one or more of which appear on each sheet. Elements of his work are vaguely reminiscent of one or two of his contemporaries, although none uses quite the same decorative devices. { See (1) Thomas Lupo's Mediterranean chart (c.1600?), British Library Add. MS.10,041; (2) a post-1588 chart of the south Atlantic by 'R.B.', Florence, BNC, Port.30; (3) anon chart (Thomas Hood? c. 1594), British Library Add Ms 17938B; (4) Robert Tindall's chart of Chesapeake Bay, etc, 1608, BL Cotton MS. Aug.I.ii.46; and (5) an unsigned chart of China, 1609, BL Cotton MS. Aug.I.ii.45 [Skelton, 1958, p.168] - respectively Tyacke (2007) pp. 1749-51, nos 33, 34, 45, 63, 64}.

com,pass roses

A selection from Llewellyn's many different compass rose centres

But it is in his compass roses that Llewellyn most asserts his independence and at the same time shows us something of his personality. If Llewellyn had been an illuminator of medieval manuscripts, rather than a chartmaker, he might well have been dubbed, 'the master of the compass rose', from his imaginative treatment of this recurring feature. Thirty-five compass roses are distributed over his sixteen charts. Since four is the maximum visible at any one time, Llewellyn could have restricted himself to that number of variations and it is doubtful if anyone would have detected the repetitions. Instead, the conscientious and inventive Llewellyn managed to think up sixteen quite different forms. His permutations are almost Bach-like in their subtlety, ringing the changes around the constant elements of an inner and outer circle, surmounted by an unchanging north-pointer.

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Analytical methods

Christ Church's Donors' Book (p.84) records the gift of the atlas (West Table A 3) by Llewellyn's sons, William and Martin, in 1634:
"Gulielmus lluellin & Martinus Filij Martini Civis londinensis D.D. Cartas Geographicas patris manu depictas & ab eodem observatas sinus Maritimi in Africa & Asia a Capite bonae Spei ad Regnum China & partem Americae peruanae" [William Llewellyn & Martin, sons of Martin Citizen of London, made the gift of the geographical charts, drawn in the father's hand and according to his own observations, of maritime straits in Africa & Asia, from the Cape of Good Hope to the Kingdom of China and towards South America]
Young Martin, who was later to become famous as a physician to Charles II and as a writer, was an undergraduate at Christ Church, possibly in 1634, certainly two years later, and went on to get his BA in 1640. But when was the atlas compiled? Christ Church's records cannot help there and to answer this we must turn to the atlas itself. But how should we begin; what is the accepted procedure for evaluating a whole atlas?

Discounting repeated names on overlapping sheets, Llewellyn's atlas contains some eleven hundred names, far too large a total to be systematically compared with similar columns of place-names from other supposedly comparable charts. And what was comparable anyway? Had Llewellyn died at a ripe old age we might have to study the entire period from, say, 1580 onwards, a span of half a century.

A search for obviously datable features met with no success. The maps of later centuries might reflect discoveries, new surveys or theories, changes in political boundaries, the foundation of cities, the impact of man on his environment; but the East in the late 16th and early 17th century was not responsive to tests of these kinds. True, the turn of the century saw the dramatic replacement of the Portuguese by the Dutch and English, but the presence of a new colonial power would not necessarily stand out on a chart.

What about visual comparison, then? R.A. Skelton warned of basing "a heavy load of theory on a visual impression" [Skelton, 1965 p.6]. Comparison of Llewellyn's outlines for the islands of the East Indies shows them to be at best vaguely similar, sometimes noticeably dissimilar, and never exactly the same as contemporary forms. Visual comparison tends, anyway, to judgements that are both subjective and imprecise.

Another possible point of departure would have been an examination of voyages to the East within the period we have delimited. Again a timely word of warning from Skelton: "Traces of voyages of which the written record is wanting may be found in the maps; and it is equally clear that the maps have suffered a high degree of wastage and loss. In other words, neither the series of voyages, represented by documents, nor the series of maps, represented by extant specimens, is complete" [Skelton, 1965 p.15]. Llewellyn's atlas contains no detected reference to any particular voyage and the spread of place-names is nowhere abnormally dense enough to suggest special knowledge. Since an analysis of Borneo toponymy by Broek confirmed the gap between the acquisition of information about the East Indies and its appearance on charts, this line of approach seemed unprofitable.

Instead it was decided to treat the problem as a strict exercise in comparative cartography. If analysis of all available maps and charts were to reveal certain clear patterns then it would not necessarily matter if the reasons for these remained obscure. They would provide the cartographic evidence we needed to establish a purely cartographic context, against which to evaluate Llewellyn's contribution. Never mind the mistakes and omissions which we, with the benefit of hindsight could detect; Llewellyn was a man of his time and presumably as informed or as ignorant as his contemporaries. Since this cartographic context had never previously been identified, this was clearly where the start had to be made.

A detailed analysis of all sixteen sheets in the atlas was obviously out of the question; there had to be some selection. The precise method hit upon owes something to the techniques of medicine. One area was chosen for intensive study and, rather like a doctor's blood sample, it was hoped that microscopic examination in the laboratory would show up traces of peculiarities infecting the whole. The essential difference, of course, is that the wider relevance of any cartographic findings would have to be checked; they could not, as in the medical analogy, be assumed. But hopefully the range of possibilities would be much reduced.

The area chosen was Java, partly because a pilot study revealed a development in its toponymy not paralleled elsewhere, and partly because its choice by the Dutch as the seat of their government in the East pointed to its special importance in the 17th century.

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The Java analysis

Initial comparison had suggested that a series of new names began to appear along Java's north coast at about the time of the first Dutch voyage (1595-7). But were they really new or were they perhaps revivals; or were we dealing instead with different series of names in use at the same time?

To confirm the significance of this tentative finding beyond any doubt, an intensive examination was made of charts, maps and globes over the long period 1550-1650. By extending the study beyond the limits of strict relevance a wider picture was revealed and confident conclusions were possible within the chosen period. During the course of this, at least 1,500 Java names were noted. By a ruthless process of compression this vast number was reduced to those sixty-two names which had been included for the first time on maps produced between 1550 and 1620. The period after 1620 is dominated by the entirely new range of names displayed on the charts of Hessel Gerritsz. Since Llewellyn has none of these it seemed sensible to curtail the secondary investigation at this point. Under one head were included all the variant forms of any one name (however much they differed) when they seemed intended for the same place. The incidence of these names on the maps under study could have been arranged graphically at this stage but the scale and complexity would have buried any patterns there might have been. So this analysis was, in turn, put back into the cauldron to distil off still further its essential features. As we were, at this point anyway, concerned only with the presence or absence of a name, not with its spelling, nor with the order in which a sequence of names along the coast was presented on different charts, the first task was to provide each with the date of its first and last appearance. Those that continued throughout the period could be safely ignored and attention focussed instead on those that had been inserted or abandoned.

The result of this survey was a definite confirmation that an entirely new series of Java names began to appear about 1598. These names occur first on a detailed chart of Java, Sumatra and southern Borneo, entitled Nieuwe caerte op Java geteeckent. It was compiled by 'G.M.A.' [i.e. Willem] Lodewijcksz, engraved by Baptista à Doetechum and published at Amsterdam by Cornelis Claesz, probably in 1598. { There is some doubt whether this detailed map was an integral part of the book but f.24v of the French edition includes the note 'Icy doibt estre mis la Carte de Iava & Sumatra', which must surely refer to this. It must be noted, though, that, with the exception of Jacatra, none of the toponymic innovations of the Lodewijcksz map have been detected in the book's text}. Examination of some twenty-five earlier maps compiled in the period up to and including 1598 revealed a consistent total of between fifteen and nineteen Java names. That the greatest number detected, twenty-three, had appeared on a map of c 1540 illustrates the static nature of East Indies cartography in the 16th century. The selection of names was fairly constant too. The forty-nine names that are found on Lodewijcksz's chart would therefore have provided a striking contrast to this traditional, unchanging picture had they merely combined different earlier selections. In fact, two-thirds of Lodewijcksz's total are innovations and his chart thus marks a transfer of initiative from the Portuguese to the Dutch which is, in a cartographic sense, as dramatic and sudden as the changes that were taking place in the geopolitical sphere.

Lodewijcksz sailed with Cornelis de Houtman as supercargo on the first voyage made by Dutch ships to the East. This fact alone provides a strong hint that the new names were gathered then and made known after the expedition's return in the summer of 1597. This is confirmed by Isaak Commelin's account of this voyage, published in Dutch in 1646 and made available in English in 1703. (It is to this latter version that references are made). Commelin's account is quite different from the one issued by Barent Langenes, a few months after the expedition's return. It is also twice as long. Where Langenes had mentioned only one of Lodewijcksz's innovations (and that the most obvious, Jacatra), Commelin refers specifically to fifteen of the thirty-two Java names that Lodewijcksz introduces.

Their source was probably a Portuguese living in Java, Pedro de Tayda [Truide, Taydo, Tayde or de Ataide], whom they met in Bantam (and who is first mentioned on 25 July 1596): "a famous Pilot, who had frequented all the coasts and Islands of the East Indies and made Maps of them all, which he promis'd to shew the Dutch. This gave them great Hopes of discovering more of that Country, than he had discover'd to them before" (Commelin p.156). Hakluyt gives the following account by Barent Langenes [to find this passage, search for 'truide']: "Among the Portingalles there was one that was borne in Malacca, of the Portingalles race, his name was Pedro Truide, a man well seene in trauayling, and one that had beene in all places of the world". De Tayda was murdered three weeks later (16 August) apparently as a direct result of the sharing of his cartographic knowledge with the Dutch. Presumably his maps and pilotage instructions, or copies of them, were taken back to Holland where they would have been gladly received by the publisher, Claesz - much as Bartolomeu Lasso's atlas had been a few years previously. Petrus Plancius, referred to de Tayda in 1598 and in 1599 stated that "it is therefore highly necessary that the masters and commandants read and well consider the writing of Pedro de Tayde and other sailors" [PMC 4:3].

{An alternative explanation would be that the maps brought back by Houtman were compiled in Java, in the course of the numerous discussions de Tayda had with the Dutch. The title of Lodewijcksz's map ends '...delineata in insula Iava, ubi ad vivum designantur vada et brevia scopulique interjacentes descripta a G.M.A.L.' [...was drawn on the island of Java, where the shoals and shallows and intervening cliffs are marked out from life, described by G.M.A.L] - with thanks to Mary Pedley for help with this translation.}

An independent Portuguese source helps to explain simultaneous additions to the toponymy of southern Borneo, not visited by Houtman's ships [Broek]. It also shows why the new names are not Dutch words, which would stand out clearly from the earlier ones, but rather a new selection of indigenous or Portuguese names. However, the inclusion on most maps of the early 17th century of some at least of Lodewijcksz's innovations justifies us in treating them as one of the most important, if not the most important, element in the cartographic context we are attempting to establish. It has not, apparently, been noted before. When considering the dating of charts supposed to have been produced at the end of the 16th century, the inclusion of Lodewijcksz's Java names, therefore, must point to 1597, or more realistically 1598, as their earliest possible date. Llewellyn's atlas includes a number of these names. Indeed, it has one of the largest concentrations of these so far identified. [See the Table of significant Java names].

In a comparable study on the maps of Borneo, already mentioned, Broek [p.148] cites only five maps for the period between Lodewijcksz and Gerritsz's much improved charts of the 1620s, and three of these are versions of Plancius's large world map of 1592, and thus in their content earlier than Lodewijcksz. In the present investigation thirty-four charts, maps and globes of this same period, of sufficient scale to offer at least ten Java names, have so far been identified and examined.

When judged purely quantitatively, the density of Java names in Llewellyn's atlas is only matched by two others: Gabriel Tatton's chart of the region between Bengal and Florida (Biblioteca Nazionale, Florence), provisionally dated to 1600, and Willem Blaeu's wall-map of Asia, one of a series of the continents first produced in 1608. All three contain roughly two-thirds of the thirty-two names introduced by Lodewijcksz. Blaeu's map has in addition a further five names not found earlier, which represent the only significant Java innovations between 1598 and 1620. The new 'Blaeu' names were not known to Llewellyn. After that date Lodewijcksz's names are largely ousted by Gerritsz's and by 1657, when Janssonius issued a detailed chart of the island, only seven remained.

As an indication of possible refinements to these generalisations a few specific examples will have to suffice:

  1. The most obvious name from the Dutch period is Jacatra. Formerly Sunda Calapa (as it was recorded by, e.g. Linschoten) and, after 1621, renamed Batavia, it remains, as modern Jakarta, a city of importance. Few maps after 1598 omit it, although none had previously named it.

  2. Surabaja, another important town, first appears on Lodewijcksz's chart, as does Tegal.

  3. Solpherburg, first included on Blaeu's map of 1608, is the earliest Dutch name given to a Javanese feature. The 1703 account of the first voyage describes "a great Mountain of burning Sulphur", at the east end of the island behind Panarukan, "which opened for the first time in the year 1586" (Commelin p.181).

  4. The Straits of Sunda, that important channel dividing Sumatra from Java, must have been known to the Portuguese for a century and it was certainly named thus before the Dutch arrived. Yet no map before 1598, so far seen, names the strait and the first to do so is not Lodewijcksz's chart but an otherwise traditional map by Hulsius. Besides another map that Hulsius issued in 1602, the strait's name has not been seen again until the 1608 Blaeu map. From then onwards it becomes a standard feature. In this, as in so many other instances, it was apparent accident that determined the date at which a name was first absorbed into the cartographic bloodstream and imitation that kept it there.

The outline commonly given to Java was essentially indefinite, since its south coast was unknown. Van Linschoten, indeed, had even questioned whether Java was an island at all. Despite the fact that Houtman's fleet returned by way of the south coast - the first European vessels known to have circumnavigated the island - there was no measurable improvement in the island's shape. It was left to Gerritsz (evidently on his engraved chart of 1618) to replace this shapeless mass with an outline that is strikingly close to its real form.

Comparative outlines for Java

It is possible that Llewellyn also sailed with De Houtman. His chart of Java (top) perpetuates the shapeless island that the Portuguese depicted on their charts and predates the remarkably modern outline produced by Dutch hydrographer Hessel Gerritsz. in 1618 (middle).

So much for the context - how does Llewellyn fit into it?

When Llewellyn's version of Java is measured against all the features which the analysis had shown to be significant, it falls naturally into a slot close to the beginning of the Dutch period. Eight of Lodewijcksz's new Java names seem to disappear after 1600, yet all are to be found in Llewellyn's atlas. One special instance can be mentioned. Arosbaja, at the west end of Madura Island, is conveyed by Lodewijcksz as Rossumbaya. This is clearly a mistake and it was to be corrected by Blaeu in 1608. But Llewellyn and Tatton both repeat Lodewijcksz's error. These three charts are bound even closer together by the inclusion of three names not traced anywhere else: Chuconin, Labuan, Meleasseri [see the Table of significant Java names].

Java and Borneo

De Houtman brought back new names for Java, Sumatra and Borneo in 1597. Llewellyn includes these.

While Lodewijcksz's seems clearly to be the mother-chart that introduces the period of Anglo-Dutch dominance in the East, Llewellyn's picture of Java is far from being a slavish copy of it and several of the name forms are noticeably dissimilar in the two versions. Beyond that, Llewellyn includes one name not found on Lodewijcksz's chart, nor, apparently, on any other, Sigulo, just east of Jakarta. [Update, January 2014. Smith (2011, p.108) points out that Agua de S.Igido and Agua da Sigida are found on charts of the 1560s and 1570s, for example one of 1576 attributed to Fernão Vaz Dourado, which contradicts the point made about sigulo.] It is also significant that Llewellyn's Juama (for Lodewijcksz's Ivanna) is the spelling adopted in the 1703 Commelin account (p.197). Tatton's Java names can all be found, with minor variations, on Lodewijcksz's chart, and Blaeu's map of 1608 is even closer to the latter.

But the essential individuality of Llewellyn's work shows that we are dealing with an important new source. None of the contemporary Dutch charts that I have been able to examine, by Cornelis Doedtsz, Everts Gijsberts and the brothers Harmen and Marten Jansz, all members of the so-called Edam School of chartmakers, reflect to anything like the same degree the new generation of Java names, and some remain entirely ignorant of them.

There is not space to mention more than the barest details of parallel studies into other sections of Llewellyn's atlas. The greater part of the impact of Houtman's voyage (or perhaps more properly of de Tayda's knowledge) was expended on Java but ripples reached Borneo and Sumatra at least, adding a further four new names for the former and a possible eleven for the latter. Llewellyn includes all but one of these. In no case does his information seem to conflict with a 16th-century date.

Llewellyn, Japan

Detail of Japan from the atlas

Attention was also paid to the shape of Japan. In 1595 Ortelius had added to his atlas Luis Teixeira's picture of Japan, an immeasurable improvement on its grotesque predecessors. Manuscript charts, in particular, were slow to adopt this and it is therefore significant both that Llewellyn should favour Teixeira's form and that his distinctive variation of it precludes his having copied the engraved map. Llewellyn's Dutch contemporaries, meanwhile, persevered with the Vaz Dourado form of half a century earlier, as did Tatton.

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Recurrence of those Java names first found on Lodewijcksz's chart of ?1598

1

Lodew. East Ind.

1598?

2

Lodew. World

1598?

3

v.Langren Asia

1598?

4

LLEWELLYN ATLAS

1598?

5

v.Langren World

1600?

6

Tatton
Ind.-Amer

1600?

7

Merc-Hon E. Indies

1606

8

Blaeu
Asia
(wall-map)
1608

9

Lavanha Java

1615

10

Gerritsz Java &c

1628

Brandaon

Brandao

-

Brandicon

Brandaon

Brandaen

Brandaem

Brandan

-

Bronden

Buama

-

-

Buania

-

-

-

-

-

-

Cangabaya

-

-

Cangabaya

Cangabaya

Cangabaia

Cangalaia

-

-

-

Chandana

-

-

Chandana

-

-

-

Chandana

-

C.Sandana

Charita

Charica

-

Charita

-

Charita

-

-

-

-

Cheregin

-

Cheregin

Cheregin

Cheregin

-

-

-

-

-

Cherola

-

-

-

-

-

Cerela

-

-

-

Chuconin

-

-

Chuconin

-

Chuconim

-

-

-

-

Daya

-

-

Daya

Daya

Daya

Dasa

Daya

-

-

Der Mayo

Der Mayo

Dermaijo

-

Der Mayo

Der Mayo

Deretmayo

Der Mayo

Dermaino

-

Dugumala

-

Dugumala

Dugumala

-

Dugumala

-

-

-

-

Gerrici

-

Gerrici

Gertici

Gerrici

[Gerrici]

Gornici

Gerrici

-

-

Iacatra

-

Iacatra

Jacatrall

Iacatra

Jacatra

-

Iacatra

-

-

Joartaon

-

-

[Joram]

-

[Joartaon]

Zaartaon

Iortan

Ioartam

Jortan

Issebongor

Essebonque

-

Issebongor

-

Essebonque

-

Issebongor

Issebongor

-

Issefucar

-

-

Issefucar

-

Essofucar

-

Issefucar

Issefucar

-

Iunculan

-

-

Sunculam

-

Sunculan

-

Iunculan

Iuncula[n]

-

Ivanna

-

-

Juama

-

Juanna

Zuama

Inuana

-

-

Labuan

-

-

Sabuane

-

Labuan

-

-

-

-

Lassaon

Lasseo

-

-

Lassao

Lassaon

Lassaon

Laisem

-

Lassem

Madura

-

-

-

-

-

-

Madura

-

-

P.Maniavac

-

-

P.Manivac

Maniavac

-

-

-

-

-

Mataran

-

-

-

Mataran

-

-

Mataran

Mataran

-

Meleasseri

-

-

Meleasseri

-

Meleasseri

-

-

-

-

Monucaon

-

-

-

-

Memucaon

Memucaem

Monucaon

-

-

Punctan

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

Pondang

Pontung

Rossumbaya

-

-

Rossumbaya

-

Rossumbaia

-

Arosbay

-

Arosbay

Sura

-

-

-

-

-

-

Sura

-

-

Surubaya

-

-

Surabaia

-

Surubaia

-

Surrabaia

Surubaia

Sourrabaya

Taggal

-

-

-

Taggal

Taggall

Taggal

Tatagalle

Taggal

-

Tanhara

-

-

-

-

Janhara

-

Tanhara

-

-

Tanjonjava

-

-

-

-

Tanjonjava

-

Tanionava

-

-

New:      32

5

5

21

11

23

11

21

9

7

Total:    49

11?

16

40

23

41

21

42

31

92 - south

Details of the maps analysed:

  1. Lodewijcksz, G.M.A. 'Nova Tabula, Insularum Iavae, Sumatrae, Borneonis et aliarum Malaccam usque, delineata in insula Iava... Nieuwe caerte op Java gheteeckent. Cornelis Nicolai excud. Baptista a Doetechum sculp.' [Amsterdam: Cornelis Claesz, c.1598]. The James Ford Bell Library has a small scan [select from the alphabetical list to the right].

  2. Lodewijcksz, G.M.A. 'Descriptio Hydrographica accommodata ad Battavorum navigationem in Javam insulam Indiae Orientalis, factam; ad quam postridie Calendas Aprilis ann. 1595 ex Hollandia solverunt et ex qua domum redierunt 3 Idus Augusti ann. 1597'. Example in the Scheepvaart Museum, Amsterdam. The names are repeated on De Bry's copy of Map No.1, 1599? and J.C. Van Neck's 'Tabula Itineraria', 1600.

  3. Langren, Hendrick Florent van. 'Asiae nova descriptio' 1598? Example in the University Library, Amsterdam.

  4. The Llewellyn Atlas, Christ Church, Oxford, Map O.14 (formerly West Table A 3).

  5. Langren, Hendrik van. 'Nova et accurata, totius orbis terrarum Geographica et Hydrographica Tabula'. 1599? Now lost but partially reproduced by Wieder 2: plate 40bis; Shirley, no.218.

  6. Tatton, Gabriel. MS chart covering the world between Bengal and Florida, 1600? MS. Biblioteca Nazionale, Florence, Port.33 c.133. Saw a photograph courtesy of Sarah Tyacke. [The atlas of 1620-21 has very few place-names, see Tyacke, 2008.]

  7. Mercator-Hondius. Hondius, Jodocus Sr. 'Insulae Indiae Orientalis praecipuae, in quibus Moluccae celeberrimae sunt' [Amsterdam, 1606].

  8. Blaeu, Willem. Wall-map of Asia. [Amsterdam, 1608]. Saw reissue of c. 1655 by Joan Blaeu at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

  9. Lavanha, Joâo Baptista. 1615 Sheet covering Java seen via PMC 4:424.

  10. Gerritsz, Hessel. Untitled MS chart of Java and Borneo, made for the Dutch East India Company, 1628. Paris, Archives du Dépôt, Pf.192, div.2, p.1.

On the above, in general, see Schilder

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Cartographic update (December 2008)

In 1595, de Houtman landed to the east of the Cape of Good Hope to let his crew recuperate. Three new names resulted from this: Vlais bay, Vis bay and Mossel bay [see Günter Schilder and James Welu, The world map of 1611 by Pieter van den Keere. Wall-maps of the 16th and 17th centuries, 3 (Amsterdam: Nico Israel, 1980) p. 20]. These names are not included by Llewellyn.

Later that year, de Houtman spent a month on Madagascar, at what they named Hollandsch Kerkhof (now Nosy Manitsa), where several crewmen were buried. Llewellyn does not include that or any names that can be associated with de Houtman [personal communication from James Armstrong, June 2006].

Indeed, with the present state of knowledge it seems that the Llewellyn atlas carries no direct evidence of that Dutch voyage, besides the de Tayda information it brought back. The atlas is based throughout on Portuguese work, even if nothing like it has survived.

W.A.R. Richardson (2006, 1991, 1989), in his analyses of the process of toponymic corruption, has demonstrated how the Lodewijcksz chart (and likewise the relevant sheet of Llewellyn's atlas) turn two small rivers in Sunda Strait and the westerly peninsula into three imaginary towns (Jssebongor, Issesucar, Juncalan) arranged along a mythical south-inclining Java coast. Richardson describes how 'two charts, on different scales and partially overlapping, were joined at a completely wrong angle by a compiler' (1989, p.9). This presumably provides evidence of how the de Tayda information was bolted onto the standard Portuguese outline. Richardson illustrates Java and the islands to its east (2006, fig.26), and (p.71) notes that Llewellyn 'has most of the same Sunda Strait names [as on Lodewijcksz], although wrongly sited on Java's north coast between Bantam and Jacatrall [Jacatra]'. This may indicate that the Dutch received notes or verbal information instead of charts from de Tayda [the account said only that he had 'promised' to show them charts], which caused this confusion. It is unlikely that de Tayda did not himself understand the local geography.


Pedro de Tayda update (January 2009)

Pedro da Tayda (d.1596). Also known as Taydo, Tayde, Ataide, or Truide and, apparently, Pedro Teixeira, he was born in either Goa or Malacca, a pilot and/or a merchant, knowledgeable about the topography and hydrography of the East Indies and, in one account, a skilled astronomer. His murder, 'by some slaves at the instigation of the Portuguese', is agreed to have taken place on 16 August 1596. Hakluyt reproduces the account of Barent Langenes (Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation Vol. 10, p. 143) with just a few lines on de Tayda [Lodewicksz's account has more]. [There are numerous online references via Google and Google Books, mostly to Dutch texts.]

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Richard Hakluyt update (January 2009)

Hakluyt, Richard (1552?-1616). No confirmed connection has yet been found between Llewellyn and the great collector of travel narratives, who published the much enlarged second edition of his Principal Navigations in 1598-1600. Hakluyt was an adviser to the East India Company about maps and travel accounts of the East, from at least late 1599. Following a meeting in January 1601, as the new company was preparing to fit out the first English fleet for the East, Hakluyt was commissioned to produce a report on the trading possibilities. Two manuscript versions of that have been published.

For the earlier report, see Heidi Brayman Hackel and Peter C. Mancall, 'Richard Hakluyt the Younger's Notes for the East India Company in 1601: a Transcription of Huntington Library Manuscript EL 2360', Huntington Library Quarterly 67, 3 (2004): 423-36 (transcription pp.432-5); for the slightly later version from the Company archives the most accessible transcription is in John Bruce, Annals of the honorable East-India Company, 3 vols (London, 1810), 1:115-21, available via Google Books. While the list of 'authors and witnesses' he cites includes references to the surviving crewmen of some previous voyages, there is no entry that could plausibly be construed as a reference to Llewellyn. However, if Llewellyn was a survivor of the de Houtman voyage (and conceivably the Raymond and Lancaster expedition as well) it seems highly likely that Hakluyt would have sought out the Steward's first-hand account of a voyage so important for English planning, particularly the details of the working of the Bantam pepper market. The relevant section of his report listed as sources the 'Englishmen that haue bin personallie in the Molucos, Jaua and in manie places of ye Portingale Indies'.

In February 1601 Hakluyt was paid for supplying three maps, whose identity is still a matter for conjecture. [An earlier commentator, confused by the use of Hakluyt's alternative name, Hackett, attributed this incident to 'Alderman' Hackett.]

Coincidentally, Hakluyt had been at both Westminster and Christ Church [like Martin Llewellyn Jr (who was born in the year of Hakluyt's death) and perhaps also Martin's unknown patron some time before].

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(Sir) Thomas Smythe update (February 2009)

There are significant triangular connections between (Sir) Thomas Smythe (1558?-1625), Llewellyn and St Bartholomew's Hospital. Besides the narrative account in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, the following details (with New Style dates) are provided in Rev. Alfred B. Beaven, The Aldermen of the City of London (London: Eden Fisher & Co., Ltd, 1913), Vol II: 'Chronological List of Aldermen. Notes on the Aldermen':

"Sir Thomas Smythe (Smith), Haberdasher. Farringdon Without 1599-1601; 1604.
Sheriff 1600-1. Elected Sheriff 1587.
Knighted 13 May 1603; M.P. Dunwich 1604-11, Sandwich 1614, Saltash 1620-2; Receiver Duchy Cornwall 1604; Ambassador to Russia; Auditor 1597-8; Treasurer St. Bartholomew's Hospital 1597-1601; Committee E.I.C. 1600-1, 1603-22 (Governor 1600-1, 1603-5, 1607-21); Governor Russia Company; Treasurer Virginia Company 1600-20; Master Haberdashers 1583-4, 1588-9, 1599-1600. Died 4 Sep 1625; Will (PCC 107 Clark) 31 Jan 1622; proved 12 Oct 1625."

From other sources the following can be added. That Smythe went as trade commissioner to negotiate with the Dutch in 1596 (when he would certainly have learnt about de Houtman's voyage) and 1598; that Thomas Hood taught mathematical geography and navigation at his house in the 1580s; and that in 1616 Smythe engaged Edward Wright to lecture to the East India Company on navigation and mathematics.

A man, then, of considerable standing in the City of London, whose consistent interest in navigation and foreign trade led to his being chosen as the first Governor of the East India Company at its foundation in 1600.

His involvement with St Bartholomew's Hospital was also long and deep, although the details remain unclear. Beaven includes the ambiguous passage: "Auditor 1597-8; Treasurer St. Bartholomew's Hospital 1597-1601". The Barts Archives apparently cannot confirm that statement, although there is a record that Thomas Smythe 'haberdasher' was a governor and almoner of the Hospital. At his death in 1625 he left them £640, the largest of his legacies. The Sir Thomas Smythe Charity was set up, presumably with that sum, and was certainly extant in 1923.

In 1603 [1604 New Style?] Llewellyn borrowed the large sum of £100 from Smythe, to be paid back personally on the following 22 February at Smythe's house [British Library Egerton Charter 7293]. In 1607 he signed a second bond with Smythe [Egerton Charter 7328], concerning an executorship involving Llewellyn's brother Maurice and somebody called Wheeler [possibly Ambrose Wheeler, one of those who signed a bill of adventure in the East India Company in 1601-2].

It is against that background we should view the meeting on 27 August 1597, at which Llewellyn's request for the post of Hospital Steward was accepted (for an unspecified future date) and he was immediately awarded the lesser post of Renter. The meeting, which was not a general court of governors, was attended by just nine individuals. They are not in alphabetical order but the first named is Thomas Smythe [he was to be knighted five years later]. Does that mean he was in the chair? And was he then the Hospital Treasurer [Beaven dates his appointment to that same year]? [As an aside, two of the others who attended that 1597 meeting, John Newman and William Quarles, were 1601-2 EIC 'Adventurers', as also was 'Morrice Llewellin' - see 'British History Online.]

None of the above weakens the growing body of circumstantial evidence pointing to the likelihood that Smythe was Llewellyn's patron in 1597. They certainly remained in contact for at least the next ten years. If this proves to be the case, the most likely reason, surely, would be that Llewellyn possessed materials from which an atlas could be constructed of the region to the east of the Cape of Good Hope that was of particular interest to the first English Fleet.

[For help with the above note thanks are due to Sarah Tyacke and Katie Ormerod, Deputy Archivist, St. Bartholomews' Hospital Archives & Museum].

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The Man

[Most of the following section derives from discoveries made by Dr Nellie Kerling, the then Archivist of St Bartholomew's Hospital, in 1975, in the Archives, including a systematic trawl through the Hospital's accounts, 1594-1610, and also the Churchwardens' Accounts of St Bartholomew's the Less, 1597-1615]

The first two noteworthy English voyages to the East were both made by James Lancaster, but the first (1592) never reached Java and the second (1601-3) was too late to have involved Llewellyn personally. Only one recorded voyage could have produced the information about Java set out by Llewellyn and, simultaneously, have been completed by summer 1597, and that was Houtman's. Dr Kerling discovered in the Hospital's records that on 27 August 1597 Llewellyn had applied in person for the stewardship of St Bartholomew's Hospital. It is the date that is vital here since it falls just two weeks after Houtman's vessels reached Amsterdam with their eighty-nine survivors, on 11 and 14 August respectively {elsewhere the figure for survivors was given as 87 - there does not seem to be a crew list}.

If Martin Llewellyn was not one of the 249 men under Houtman's command how else can we explain his sons' statement in Christ Church's Donors' Book that the atlas had been drawn "according to his own observations"? Do we see in Llewellyn a young man, chastened by his experiences, settling for a secure job ashore after an extremely hazardous voyage? Direct evidence that he accompanied Houtman is still wanting but the idea of an Englishman sailing with the Dutch need not stretch the imagination. Two of the four Dutch fleets that set sail to the East in 1598 had English pilots aboard.

When the few clues to Martin Llewellyn's identity were followed up they led, step by step, to the happy discovery that he had spent what must have been almost his entire working life in one place. When he had applied for the Steward's post in August 1597 a promise was clearly made to him. This was fulfilled in July 1599, when he presented himself to the Hospital Governors to hear that he had been appointed as their Steward. But, on the earlier occasion, he had been granted the post of Hospital Renter, with immediate effect. Initially, he held both posts and, after 1607, just that of Steward, in which position he remained uninterruptedly until his death in 1634. The value of this for our purpose is that his day-to-day duties associated with the collecting of rents and, as Steward, the requirement to 'supervise the victuals, and the admission and discharge of patients' - would have been incompatible with any voyage abroad after 1597, if the almost annual succession of children born to him between 1606 and 1623 was not even more potent evidence [recorded in the parish records of St Bartholomew the Less]. {Dr Kerling pointed out that, as the Hospital's rent-collector between 1597 and 1607, his name appears at the head of the accounts. Had he been absent in that period, leaving a deputy in place, she thought that the second name would have been mentioned as well. Bernard Quaritch had for sale a volume of receipts for rent paid to the Hospital by Sir Richard Saint-George, 1601-14, each signed by Llewellyn, half yearly initially and then quarterly until the end of his time as Renter/Receiver {listed on the web in 2006 at < http://www.polybiblio.com/quaritch/EW399.html >; not there February 2008}. As further corroboration, Dr Kerling also noted that the Governors' complaint of 1604 was directed at him personally}.

estate plan handwriting

Llewellyn was Steward of St Bartholomew's Hospital from 1599 until his death in 1634. Distictive scale borders and the outer frame suggest that an anonymous plan of 1617 in the Hospital's Repertory Book was also his work. Further evidence for Llewellyn's authorship of the Repertory Book plans comes from a comparison of the handwriting found in the atlas with that on one of these plans.

His growing family could well have been the cause of his perpetual state of debt [see His finances below], which involved him at one time in a dispute with William Harvey, the discoverer of the circulation of blood. Somewhere there may be lurking some clue that will eventually link the two spheres in which Martin Llewellyn operated, as chartmaker and Steward. One possible bridge is provided by a series of estate plans, a few of them dated 1617, in the Hospital Repertory Book, some of which betray his characteristic style. {On these, see Moore 2:257-60; some of these plans are among those issued by the London Topographical Society, in their 'Maps, Plans and Views' series, nos 84, 87 (1950, 1954), on which see also Judith Etherton, 'New evidence - Ralph Treswell's association with St Bartholomew's Hospital', in: A.L. Saunders (ed.) London Topographical Record 27 (1995) pp.103-17 (Publication No. 149)}. One of these plans is evidently referred to in the payment to Llewellyn in 1613-14 of 3s 4d "for drawing a platt of the precinct of this parish" (Churchwardens Accounts). While his charts betray the work of a trained draughtsman, these further finds illustrate his versatility. {For a listing of the various written surveys and plans see the entry for St Bartholomew's Hospital Archives and Museum in the Access to Archives (under 'Description:' then 'Particular of Lands')}.

Fresh information concerning Llewellyn’s estate surveys is set out in Dorian Gerhold’s London Plotted: Plans of London Buildings c.1450-1720, London Topographical Society, Publication No.178 (2016), see particularly the ‘Introduction’ and the detailed notes on Plans 19, 20 and 21. This confirms that, while Llewellyn certainly copied some of the plans from the work of others, those directly relating to the Hospital were actually surveyed by him. Though not always topographically accurate, they were drawn to scale.

Gerhold introduces the unexpected information that Llewellyn had also made at least two relief models, which, as the author points out, helps explain why the 1617 plan of St Bartholomew the Less (his Plan 21) shows the lower parts of the walls as if folded flat onto the ground ‘exactly as a model-maker might do it’. {These two paragraphs added 5 December 2016}

Further than that, biographical details are yet to emerge. Clues may lie in the relationships with those to whom he owed money (see next section) or the wider range of his Associates. For a man on an annual salary of £10 to have incurred debts of many times that figure, and to have had the support of rich and influential figures, suggests there are important facets of his life of which we still know nothing. Despite the embarrassment he must have caused the Governors, his 35-year term as Steward was the longest in the Hospital's history.

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His finances

{Since financial matters, usually difficulties, provide most of what we know about Llewellyn, it is worth tabulating the public record systematically. As background, it can be noted that, as Steward, he was handling about £100 a month, against his annual salary of £10 [Moore, 2:229], though clearly he must have had other sources of income.

[See, where appropriate, His associates]

  • 1597, August 27. Asked for and was granted the reversion of the function of Steward (when it should become vacant). He was also accepted by the Governors, from that date, to collect and receive rent from Hospital property (worth £5 a year). This continued after his appointment as Steward
  • 1599, July 21. 'This day Marten Llewellen is admitted to the roome and place of the steward of this house according to a former grant'. His annual salary was £10, and a house was provided free
  • 1603. Bond to Sir Thomas Smith [Smythe], Haberdasher of London [i.e. first Governor of the East India Company]. British Library Egerton Charter 7293. Also a similar bond for 1607 [Egerton Charter 7328]. (Neither seen)
  • 1604, September. The Governors complained that the rent was not properly collected because the Renter 'cannot supply the same place by reason of his Stewardship'
  • 1606, January. His Renter's salary was quadrupled to £20 p.a. He promised to bear all the costs himself
  • 1607, September 19. He was replaced as Renter by Robert Cage, Dyer, and reverted to his £10 p.a. Steward's salary
  • 1607 - see 1603
  • 1609, October 21. Following a letter from Sir John Spencer, and referral from the Lord High Treasurer of England and the Chancellor of the Exchequer, he was summoned before the Lord Mayor and Aldermen for non-payment of a debt of £52.10s owed to John Harvey, a royal footman. This was taken over by William Harvey, who became the Hospital physician in that same year. It was agreed that 50s quarterly would be paid directly to Harvey from Llewellyn's salary [note that the sum exactly equalled his annual income of £10!] - James Paget, Records of Harvey: in extracts from the Journals of the Royal Hospital of St. Bartholomew (London, 1846), pp.3-4; Moore 2:461 (note) [original in St Bartholomew's Hospital Journal 1607-47, f.20v]
  • 1610. Paid £3 ‘for makeinge twoe modells of the tenements in Newgate Markett London the one sheweinge the proportion of the brewehouse before the buildinge of the houses nowe standinge uppon the soyle thereof, and the other the proportion of the same tenements as now they stand builded’. In 1615, money was spent on ‘past boards to mend the modells of the brewhouse the backhouse and the millhouse’. [For full references see Gerhold 2016, ‘Introduction’.]
  • 1611, March 25. Arrested by the Sheriff's officers, and saved by the intervention of the patients and Sisters. [This may have been the occasion when "two of the Sisters beat some sheriff's officers who came to arrest [him] for debt" - Moore 2:760]. The Governors let him compound for the debt, which remained for the rest of his life [Moore 2:792].
  • 1613, February 1. Elizabeth Launden claimed he had taken away £13 worth of pewter and linen. The Governors asked Matron to mediate as she 'hath some former knowledge of her [Elizabeth's] demands'. Llewellyn gave Anthony Bartlett as surety and also agreed to 'discharge the hospital and parish for suche children which he nowe hath or hereafter shall have borne within this parish' - he had had five recorded children by then [report in the Archives]
  • 1613, May 22. Paid ‘for making a ground plotte of the church yards and garden neere Sr Thomas Bodlies house and Pilkynton place the xxiith of May 1613’. [See Gerhold 2016, ‘Introduction’.]
  • 1613/14 [Churchwardens Accounts, running from May to May]. He was paid 3s 4d [3 shillings and 4 pence] for 'drawing a platt of the precinct of this parish', i.e. of St Bartholomew the Less, which was co-terminus with the Hospital
  • 1618, May. The Hospital’s court examined ‘a booke of certaine plotts made by Marten Llewellen of divers lands of this Hospitall’. [See Gerhold 2016, ‘Introduction’.]
  • 1621. Paid £5 ‘for his extraordinary imployments in draughts’. [See Gerhold 2016, ‘Introduction’.]

  • 1634. Following his burial on May 12th, the Governors, at the request of Sir Paul Pindar [Pinder] and Mr [James] Ingram gave £80 to his widow Sara[h] - [Moore 2:792]
  • 1634. At some point in this year, most likely after his death in May, his atlas, which might have been thought to have had commercial value, was donated to Christ Church, Oxford. Llewellyn seems not to have left a will as his affairs were settled by Administration
  • 1634. Following the death of his brother Morris [Maurice] a debt of £852 'and any other debt' owing by Martin were discharged as per his will (dated 15 November 1634, with probate granted 3 January 1634/5)}

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Conclusion

This article grew from the need to substantiate a few words, written in Latin, into Christ Church's Donors' Book, apparently in 1634, that the charts in the atlas were 'drawn in [his] hand and according to his own observations'. There was no reason to doubt the accuracy of that statement but the presence of plans of Hospital property betraying the same competent but idiosyncratic drafting style as the atlas, and the record of a payment to Llewellyn for drawing one of those plans, provide independent corroboration of the first part of that statement, relating to draftmanship. The second element, that the atlas embodied his own observations, i.e. that he had been to the East Indies himself and gathered cartographic information there, remains otherwise 'not proven'. But, while no precise model for his atlas's outlines or toponymy has been traced, all the available evidence points to those having derived from Houtman's voyage, the only one whose timing and itinerary could have fitted in with the known details of Llewellyn's well-documented career.

To date, the earliest known English sea charts of the East belong to a series by Gabriel Tatton, unearthed in the Admiralty Library {later Hydrographic Office, Taunton; now Portsmouth Naval Museum, Admiralty Library Manuscript, MSS 352} by Sarah.Tyacke. They have been dated to 1620-21 [see Tyacke, 2008]. Robert Dudley's Arcano del Mare of 1646 had previously been considered the earliest sea atlas by an Englishman. {Coincidentally, Dudley had been at Christ Church (from 1588)}. Even if Llewellyn had made his fair drawings in, say, 1615, this would not invalidate the claim that the charts belong, as far as their contents are concerned, to the previous century and are thus by a clear margin the earliest English ones of their kind.

A crucial diagnostic tool is described in the Analytical methods section. Having defined what was called the 'cartographic context' - part of but distinct from the historical context - this was applied to the toponymy of the north coast of Java. This established a close link with an unsuspected legacy of the first Dutch voyage to the East Indies, namely a sequence of new names. Later, the Dutch would transform the cartography of Indonesia but Houtman's contribution related more to place-names than to improved coastal outlines. It is evident that this information came from an independent Portuguese source. Pedro de Tayda was already known to history, though as little more than a name. Now for the first time the detail of his cartographic signature can be documented. Just as de Tayda seems not to have previously shared his much-admired knowledge with his Portuguese countrymen, so his murder [the first example of a cartographic killing?] removes the possibility that his information could have been brought back by a later voyage. No trace has been found in the Llewellyn atlas of any information dating from later than 1597 [though, of course, future research might contradict that]. The toponymic innovations of Blaeu and Gerritsz (1608 and 1628) are absent. Nor does New Guinea have any reference to the discoveries of Torres and Le Maire (1606 and 1616). Further anchoring the atlas to the beginning of its possible date-range is the fact that it includes names that were to disappear from the cartographic bloodstream shortly thereafter.

That I have risked offence by claiming a man with so Welsh a name for England is due to an absence, so far, of any evidence linking him directly with Wales. He lived the greater part of his life in London (as the longest-serving Steward in the history of St Bartholomew's Hospital), gave names to his children [Anne, Anthony, Gabriel, Henry, John, Martin (twice), Morris, Richard, Robert, Thomas, William] that show him to have been in practice, if not in origin, an Englishman, and was buried in St Bartholomew's the Less, London. The compromise term, British, is both cumbersome and inaccurate.

I wonder if Christ Church had any idea of the extraordinary coincidence involving two items they received, apparently in 1634. Alongside the classics and theology that fill most of the pages of their Donors' Book, they recorded two consecutive, but apparently unconnected, gifts of, respectively, Llewellyn's atlas and "Wagenars Mirrour of Mariners", or, in other words, the English translation of Waghenaer's Spieghel der Zeevaerdt, which appeared in 1588 as the first sea atlas to be produced in England. A bumper cartographic year indeed for Christ Church. {For a note about the donor of the Waghenaer atlas, John Gofton, see under the Associates}.

Unlike Waghenaer, Llewellyn seems to have had no influence on the development of marine cartography, since his atlas clearly remained in his possession, and no other version is known. The possibility remains, though, that Llewellyn was involved in some way in the early days of the East India Company. He would presumably have had information of value to those planning a voyage to the East. Certainly his brother, a founding investor in the new company, and its first Governor, Sir Thomas Smythe, were among those to whom he owed money. But, in the absence of any surviving charts directly associated with the early years of the East India Company, Llewellyn's atlas provides a glimpse into the practical cartographic knowledge that could have been available to those Englishmen who first sailed to the East under the Company's aegis. In a wider sense, it must rank as the closest surviving manuscript to the all-important first voyage of the Dutch, an event that signalled the twilight of the Portuguese empire and the simultaneous births of the Dutch and English successors to it. The detail contained in his charts and the fact that Llewellyn evidently voyaged to the East himself combine to assure his atlas a prominent and authoritative place in any future cartographic studies of the East.

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Possibilities for future research (with additions December 2008 & January 2009)

  • The atlas binding. {Was the atlas bound in London, before being taken to Christ Church, or afterwards, by the library? The evidence of its blind-stamped decoration might enable that to be answered. It seems unlikely that the impoverished Llewellyn, who never arranged to present the atlas in his life-time, and hence left part of the title-sheet blank, would have run to that expense. It might, though, have been paid for by Martin Jr's unknown patron.}
  • Christ Church, Oxford. Why did the atlas go to Christ Church rather than the Bodleian? Because Martin junior was up there at the time of his father's death, and the fact that, although Sir Thomas Bodley had been a close neighbour of his father from 1599/1600-1613, this would have had little meaning to one born in 1616? Might there be any significance in the fact that three of the others mentioned in this essay were connnected with the college: Robert Dudley and Richard Hakluyt as undergraduates (and, in the latter's case, as a Fellow), and Ralph Treswell as land surveyor of its estates?
  • Descendants. Martin, junior seems to have been specially favoured and, with his brother William (six years older) was the one who presented the atlas to Christ Church. Martin's son Richard in turn went to Westminster School. Conceivably that line of descent might have passed on documents relating to Llewellyn's pre-Hospital career.
  • Earlier English voyage to the East. {If Llewellyn sailed with de Houtman in 1595, it is reasonable to ask why he might have been selected. The English who accompanied the second Dutch voyage were pilots, but there is no evidence that that would have applied to Llewellyn. It is pure speculation but might he have been part of the voyage to the East under George Raymond and James Lancaster (1591-4)? Since this reached Sumatra, the experience could well have been useful to the Dutch.}
  • East India Company. For possible connections between Llewellyn and the young company, although no direct links have yet been found, see the next Associates section under: Lancaster, Llewellyn (Morris), Smythe and Woodall, and the update for Hakluyt.
  • Houtman's voyage. Can Martin Llewellyn be recognised, perhaps with a disguised name, among the list of the 89 who returned with Houtman in 1597 [if such a list exists]? Dr Kerling pointed out that 'Lodewisckz', author of the printed account of that voyage, and 'Llewellyn' both mean 'son of Louis' (in Dutch and Welsh respectively). This is presumably an intriguing coincidence.
  • Patronage. Did Llewellyn obtain the Steward's position via the advocacy of a patron, and, if so, who? Was the atlas intended for presentation and, if so, to whom? Why was his eighth son, Martin, apparently specially favoured, being the only one of the original eleven sons to go to Westminster School and Christ Church, and on to a prominent career? Who would have paid his fees?
  • Portuguese atlas. {Where did Llewellyn find the atlas that served as his model, with sufficient leisure to make the careful copies for his sixteen charts? And, if this work was done in London (which is surely more likely than in Java), might that atlas survive, even if not known to Portuguese scholars? The fact that Llewellyn's scale is far larger than that of any surviving Portuguese work does not necessarily mean that he did more than enlarge his model, without adding additional detail. However, that would have been more complicated than direct tracing and would demonstrate further skill on his part}
  • 'Salter'. In 1597, when he applied for the Steward's position, and on the 1603 and 1607 bonds to Sir Thomas Smith [Smythe] (British Library Egerton Charter 7293 & 7328), Llewellyn was described as 'Salter'. Elsewhere, e.g. in the christening records, he was termed 'Gent'. If he was a member of the Salters' Company why was that not habitually recognised? {In December 2008, Katie George, Salters' Company Archivist, kindly checked and found no reference to Llewellyn (although most of the records were destroyed in the Fire of 1666). There is no known connection between the Company and Elizabethan voyagers.}
  • Somerset origin? {Notes and Queries, series 3, volume 1 (Jan-June 1862) p.28 has notes by 'Ina.' about the 'Family of Llewellyn'. Starting with the Steward's son, it moves back to a family in Wells, Somerset in the second half of the 16th century, including Maurice (the city's MP) and Henry (who founded almshouses in his will; he died in 1614). The children of Thomas & Mary are described, including a Martin, but the absence of a named Maurice makes it unlikely that these are the Steward's parents. One reference might be relevant, though. "In 1632, a Bill in Chancery was filed by Maurice and Martin Llewellyn, against the Corporation of Wells, respecting the money left to the poor of Wells by Henry Llewellin, as before noticed [i.e. the almshouses]". The pairing of Maurice (probably the elder brother) and Martin (two years before each of them died) perhaps does indicate that our Martin was the product of Somerset gentry.} {December, 2008}
  • Welsh origin?. Clearly with the name Llewellyn there must have been a Welsh origin, even if a generation or more back. Of his children's names, only that of his second son, Morris/Maurice, is Welsh. Since that was the name of his wealthy brother, its use by Martin might have been to honour him, or a common forebear. The relevant organisation for researching a possible Welsh birthplace, the Honorable Society of Cymmrodorion, was not contacted.
  • Wife/wives. For his last three children's baptisms (1619, 1621, 1623) his wife was named as Sara. The record of earlier births (1606, 1607, 1609, 1610, 1611, 1613, 1614, 1615, 1616) do not name a wife. That, combined with the three-year gap between 1616 and 1619 suggest that a first wife had died, or is the strange 1613 reference to Elizabeth Launden and his children [see Finances] an indication of illegitimate offspring? No record of any marriage has been found.

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People with whom Llewellyn was associated (definitely or possibly) [updated January 2009]

[Reference is made to the new Oxford Dictionary of National Biography [Oxford DNB], accessible free online for UK public library subscribers. See, where appropriate, His finances]

  • Bartlett, Anthony [given in surety in the Elizabeth Launden dispute, 1613]
  • Bodley, Sir Thomas (1545-1613) - his library at Oxford was being formed from 1598, opened in 1603, and was endowed in 1611; he lived next to the Hospital from 1599/1600 until his death; he had previously been Elizabeth's permanent resident in the United Provinces (1588-97) and served on the governing council, which would have given him many Dutch contacts [Oxford DNB]
  • C., John (?) - what appears to be a large C with John beneath can be seen on the reverse of the first chart in the atlas
  • Fisher, William - named in Llewellyn's Administration, May 1634
  • Gofton. The copy of Waghenaer's Mariners Mirrour, whose donation is recorded in the Donor's Book next to that of the Llewellyn atlas (and might possibly be connected), was given by John Gofton. He had matriculated, aged 16, in 1632. The gift was presumably from his father, Sir Francis Gofton, of Lambeth, London, who had been one of the commissioners to enquire into the Virginia Company in 1623.
  • Hackett, Alderman: see the note to Richard Hakluyt
  • Hakluyt, Richard (1552?-1616): see the separate update [Oxford DNB]
  • Harvey, John, a royal footman, brother of William, re 1609 debt
  • Harvey, William (1578-1657), brother of above, the hospital physician for 34 years from 1609, appointed Physician in Ordinary to James I (by 1618), discoverer of the circulation of blood, took over brother's debt [Oxford DNB]
  • Ingram, James, Warden of the Fleet, with Sir Paul Pindar urged a payment to Llewellyn's widow in 1634
  • Lancaster, James (1554/5-1618). {One of the commanders of the voyage in 1591-4 that reached Sumatra and the Strait of Malacca, he became a director of the East India Company in 1600 and led the first official English fleet to the East (1601-2). Might Llewellyn have sailed on that earlier voyage? Pure speculation, but, if so, it would have provided another strong link between the Steward and the EIC} [Oxford DNB]
  • Launden, Elizabeth, dispute with, 1613
  • Llewellyn. The following variant spellings of his name have been noted [doubtless, there are others]: Llewellen, Llewellin, Lewellin, Lewellen, Lewellyn, Lewelline, Luellen; in addition, his son Martin is listed by the Oxford DNB as 'Lluelyn'
  • Llewellyn, Howell (Hevellus) (d.1625), a Merchant Taylor living in Duke Lane, was also resident in the parish of St Bartholomew the Less; Elizabeth Llewellyn, his widow, died in 1633 - their connection with Martin, if any, is not known
  • Llewellyn, Martin, junior (1616-82), eighth of eleven sons (and one daughter) and the second of that name (the first Martin, born 1606, having evidently died), the only one recorded as going to Westminster School and Christ Church, Oxford, where he matriculated in 1636 (having, with his [elder] brother William, presented the atlas to the college two years previously, when he was aged 17), became Physician to Charles II (1660) and Mayor of High Wycombe (1671). Notwithstanding his father's indebtedness to William Harvey, young Martin contributed a long prefatory poem to the English translation of Harvey's In exercitationes de generatione animalium (1651); he also features in Biographical Index of English Drama Before 1660. [Oxford DNB, as 'Lluelyn'].
  • Llewellyn, Martin, a keeper of the Wood Street Compter [or Counter, a debtors' prison]. A strange incident is described in Robert Tittler, Townspeople and Nation: English Urban Experiences 1540-1640 (Stanford University Press, 2001), pp.161-32 [available via Google Books], in which this presumed namesake, contemporary and near neighbour (less than five minutes walk to the east of the Hospital) was involved in a financial swindle in 1605, in which he helped a fellow conspirator escape. Given the Steward's perennial indebtedness, this coincidence has a splendid irony.
  • Llewellyn, Morris (Maurice), brother of Martin, one of the 215 who signed the charter incorporating the East India Company (31 December 1600), signed bills of adventure 1601, 1602 - State Papers; Stevens p.254; at his death (six months after Martin's) the terms of his will discharged a debt of £852 owing by Martin
  • Llewellyn, Sara[h], Martin's wife (and later widow), first mentioned in 1619, and cited as mother of his last three children
  • Lodewicksz, Willem [G.M.A.] (d. 1604). {A supercargo, or merchant, with the first Dutch fleet under de Houtman (1595-7), he signs the chart of the East Indies that illustrates his own published account of that voyage. Llewellyn's atlas has strong similarities with Lodewicksz's chart (though also significant differences). Had Llewellyn been on that voyage, he would certainly have known Lodewicskz and presumably shared cartographic sources with him. That is all speculation. For the available facts, see the biographical note by Vibeke Roeper and Diederick Wildeman in, Jennifer Speake (ed.) Literature of Travel and Exploration: An Encyclopedia, 3 vols (London Taylor & Francis, 2003) 2: 734-6}
  • Pindar, Sir Paul [Pinder] (1565/6-1650), with 'Mr Ingram' urged a payment to Llewellyn's widow in 1634; about 10 years earlier he had sold a large diamond to Charles I for £18,000, and five years later he was recorded as having made loans totalling £100,000 [Oxford DNB]
  • Smythe [Smith], Sir Thomas (1558?-1625): see the separate update [Oxford DNB]
  • Spencer, Sir John (d.1610), Lord Mayor of London, 1594/5, President of St Bartholomew's Hospital 1603-10, on 21 October 1609 sent a letter to the Hospital Governors about Llewellyn's debt of £52.10s to John Harvey [Moore 2:461 (note); Oxford DNB]
  • Treswell, Ralph (c.1540-1616/17), surveyor for St Bartholomew's Hospital (1584-95), one of whose plans is held by them (1586), later employed by Christ's Hospital (1597-1616). Presumably coincidentally, he also surveyed for Christ Church, Oxford. [Oxford DNB; Bendall 243]. {See Judith Etherton, 'New evidence - Ralph Treswell's association with St Bartholomew's Hospital', in: A.L. Saunders (ed.) London Topographical Record 27 (1995) pp.103-17 (Publication No. 149). Peter Barber makes the interesting suggestion that the Hospital's experience with Treswell may have led them to appoint Llewellyn because of his known cartographic skills.}
  • Woodall, John (1570-1643), Surgeon of St Bartholomew's (1616-43), appointed first Surgeon General of the East India Company (1613-42) 'probably recommended by Sir Thomas Smyth, its governor and his patron' [Oxford DNB] [Moore 2:618].

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References

(a number published subsequently to 1975, when the original article was written; further updates December 2008)

Barber, Peter, 'Map-making in England, ca. 1470-1650', in: David Woodward (ed.) The History of Cartography, Volume 3, Book 2 (University of Chicago Press, 2007), p.1652, note 464.

Barker, G.F. Russell and Alan H. Stenning, The record of old Westminsters (London, 1928) 2:585 [on Martin Llewellyn junior].

Bendall, Sarah, Dictionary of land surveyors and local map-makers of Great Britain and Ireland 1530-1850, 2nd ed. 2 vols (British Library, 1997) [Llewellyn is not included].

Broek, Jan O.M., 'Place names in 16th and 17th century Borneo', Imago Mundi: the International Journal for the History of Cartography 16 (1962): 129-48.

Campbell, Tony, 'The Drapers' Company and its school of seventeenth century chart-makers', in: Helen Wallis & Sarah Tyacke (eds), My head is a map: essays & memoirs in honour of R.V. Tooley (London: Francis Edwards & Carta Press, 1973): 81-106.

Campbell, Tony, 'Martin Llewellyn's Atlas of the East (c. 1598)' [unpublished paper presented to the International Conference on the History of Cartography, Greenwich, 7-11 September 1975]

Campbell, Tony, 'Atlas Pioneer', Geographical Magazine 48:3 (December 1975) pp.162-7.

Campbell, Tony, 'Martin Llewellyn's Atlas of the East: a mystery partly unravelled', Christ Church Library Newsletter 5, 2 (Hilary 2009), pp.1, 7-10. [A summary of what is found on this webpage.]

Commelin, Isaak, A collection of voyages undertaken by the Dutch East-India Company (London, 1703) [translation of the 1646 Dutch text].

Durand, Frederic & Richard Curtis, Maps of Malaya and Borneo: Discovery, Statehood and Progress (Editions Didier Millet & Jugra Publication, 2014). [Not seen.]

Gerhold, Dorian. London Plotted: Plans of London Buildings c.1450-1720, London Topographical Society, Publication No.178 (2016).

Lodewijcksz, G.M.A.L. Premier livre de l'histoire de la navigation aux Indes Orientales par les Hollandois (Amsterdam: Claesz., 1598).

Moore, Sir Norman, The history of St Bartholomew's Hospital, 2 vols (London, 1918).

Notes and Queries, series 3, volume 1 (Jan-June 1862) p.28. [About earlier Llewellyns]

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography [the revised and extended DNB is available online to subscribers, or free to users of the UK public library network].

PMC. Armando Cortesão & Avelino Teixeira da Mota, Portugaliae Monumenta Cartographica, 6 vols (Lisbon, 1960). A second reduced edition ([Lisbon]: Imprensa Nacional - Casa da Moeda, 1987) with corrective addenda by Alfredo Pinheiro Marques.

Richardson, William A.R., The Portuguese discovery of Australia: fact or fiction? (Canberra: National Library of Australia, 1989) p.9.

Richardson, William A.R., 'The origin of place-names on maps', The Map Collector 55 (Summer 1991): 18-23, especially 20.

Richardson, William A.R., Was Australia charted before 1606: the Jave la Grande inscriptions (Canberra: National Library of Australia, 2006), pp.70-1, fig. 26 (detail of Llewellyn's Java etc). [Including a comparison between the Lodewijcksz and Llewellyn names.]

Schilder, Günter, Monumenta Cartographica Neerlandica Vol. VII. Cornelis Claesz (c. 1551-1609): Stimulator and driving force of Dutch cartography (Alphen aan den Rijn: Canaletto/Repro-Holland, 2003). ISBN 90 6469 765 5 [and other volumes, e.g. Vol. IV for the 1608 Blaeu wall-map of Asia].

Shirley, R.W., The mapping of the world: early printed world maps 1472-1700 (London: Holland Press, 1983 [and later editions]).

Skelton, R.A., Explorers' maps: chapters in the cartographic record of geographical discovery (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1958).

Skelton, R.A.,'Looking at an early map', University of Kansas Publications, Library Series, 17 (Lawrence: University of Kansas Libraries, 1965).

Smith, F. Andrew & Hilary F. 'What really was "the Kingdom of Hermata" in West Borneo', Borneo Research Bulletin 42 (2011): 104-10. [with new insights in the Java names in the atlas.]

Smith, Thomas R., 'Manuscript and printed sea charts in seventeenth-century London: the case of the Thames School', in: Norman J.W. Thrower (ed.) The compleat plattmaker: essays on chart, map, and globe making in England in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries (University of California Press, 1978): 45-100.

State Papers - Colonial. East Indies, China and Japan [entries 281 and 288 re Morris Llewellyn and the East India Company, 1600 and 1602].

Stevens, Henry, Dawn of British trade to the East Indies as recorded in the Court Minutes of the East India Company 1599-1603 (London, 1886) [re Morris Llewellyn].

Tyacke, Sarah, 'Chartmaking in England and its Context, 1500-1660', in: David Woodward (ed.) The History of Cartography, Volume 3, Book 2 (University of Chicago Press, 2007), pp. 1722-80.

Tyacke, Sarah, 'Gabriel Tatton's maritime atlas of the East Indies, 1620-1621: Portsmouth Royal Naval Museum, Admiralty Library Manuscript, MSS 352', Imago Mundi: the International Journal for the History of Cartography 60:1 (2008) pp. 39-62.

Wieder, F.C. Monumenta Cartographica. 5 vols (The Hague, 1925-33).

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