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1832 Bordeaux.

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Date: 1832 (Published) London

Dimensions: 12.5 x 15 inches (31.8 x 38.1 cm)

This attractive map of the ancient port city of Bordeaux, France, was published in 1832 by the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, also referred to as SDUK.

The map provides a bird’s eye view of the city as it was in 1832. Located on the banks of the Garonne River, the city proper is a mere 15 miles from the Atlantic Ocean, and the river is deep and wide enough to allow ships to dock at the city’s many quays. The quays of that day are named along the river bank. The city itself is shown in great detail, with all streets delineated and named, as are major throughways leading other cities. Important buildings and public places are shown and named, and a numbered list in the upper right quadrant serves to identify them. Below the maps are insets showing the city and sailing vessels plying the water   from the perspective of two different quays along the river.

Archeological evidence suggests that the area was settled at least by the Bronze Age. The climate and the properties of the soil in the region lent themselves to the cultivation of grapes, and evidence documents winemaking in Bordeaux by the 6th century BCE when grape vines were introduced by Greek and Phoenician sailors. They were not the earliest known vintners, but among the first in western Europe. The city and its surrounding environs are renowned for the fines wines they produce.

The SDUK was founded in 1828 by Henry Peter Brougham, an idealistic British nobleman. The aim of the society was to promote self-education and egalitarian sharing of knowledge by providing instruments of learning such as maps and various other publications. Despite being affiliated with London University and various major publishing houses, the Society ultimately failed to achieve its goal as the publications were too costly for the targeted middle to lower class echelons of British society. At the same time, its publications were not grand enough or fine enough to appeal to the aristocracy.

Condition: This map is in A condition with original hand coloring on clean paper. Three small pin holes are apparent in the top margin, well away from the map image. 

Inventory #12323

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