Some maps were issued independently, but most were published in atlases or as book illustrations. Sometimes, for example in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, it was common for publishers to offer maps as separate items as well as bound together into an atlas. This left the individual free to purchase those maps that interested him, which he could then have bound by his own binder if he wished. In such cases maps were priced individually, with a discounted price applied to the complete atlas.
Because most maps have at some time been part of a volume, those which were too large for the format of volume they inhabited would have been folded. Maps from the larger atlases may be unfolded or folded but once; but those from smaller volumes, such as the maps issued in the gazetteers of the eighteenth century, will have multiple folds. Moreover maps may have been mounted on “stubs” – strips of heavy paper or linen attached to the maps and sewn into a volume – or have been sewn directly into the binding. This will also affect their condition.
Maps listed on this site which were once folded but are now presented flat have been pressed with the intenion of removing such evidence of folding – and possibly creasing – which remains. In many cases the folds will have almost entirely disappeared. Nevertheless the presence of old folds will always be cited in the descriptions. All maps listed are in at least very good condition, and all but the most trivial defects will be cited in the descriptions.