An old map of Hertfordshire

Some brightly dressed soldiers

Hertfordshire map

Old maps can tell us many things about the county. This one was produced during the 17th century. We can see that there were fewer towns and the natural geographical features are more pronounced. There seem to be more woods and green spaces, and more hills – here drawn as mini mountains!   What I like most about this map, though, has very little to do with geography. In the right hand corner of the map, just above the scale, there is a group of men poring over another map – or maybe it is meant to be this one. One man is obviously a soldier as he is dressed in armour, holds a pike and carries a sword. The other men are brightly dressed; one also holds a pike and both carry swords. Why are these men shown on the map?   Like every county in England, Hertfordshire was deeply affected by the civil war that raged between King Charles I and the Parliamentary forces in the 1640s. Hertfordshire was mostly for Parliament, although there were some Royalist strongholds in the county.   Are the men shown on the map cavaliers for King Charles or roundhead supporters of Oliver Cromwell in disguise?

This page was added on 10/09/2009.

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  • We are so proud to own this map purchased in Ware

    By Marian Thompson (16/08/2018)