The City of London from prehistoric times to c.1520, Volume III

The City of London from prehistoric times to c.1520
Publish date: 
Oxford University Press

General Editor: Mary D. Lobel
Topographical Mapping Editor: W.H Johns

From the description printed at publication:

'This large-format atlas provies ten full-colour maps of the City of London from Prehistoric times to the early sixteenth century.  Supported with full textual commentary and a gazetteer, they offer a unique view of the early development of a great capital city.

No topographical record of London existed until the late sixteenth century, by which time much of its magnificent medieval architecture was irretrievably lost.  From the sevententh century the medieval landscape was further obliterated by the widening or destruction of many old streets and lanes, and the creation of new thoroughfares. These lost dimensions are now illuminated in unique large-scale maps of the period c.1520, and in a series of meticulously detailed maps of earlier periods, including a map of pre-Roman London, showing the distribution of Iron Age sites with insets of Mesolitic, Neolithic, and Bronze Age finds.

Commentary by six distinguished scholars sets the topographical development of London within its historical context.  There is a chapter on the problems encountered and the methods used in the reconstruction, and a comprehensive gazetteer provides indispensable source material for every known principal building, street, lane, and alley of the medieval period.

This is the third volume on British towns produced by the Historic Towns Trust, and the first to be published by Oxford Univerity Press.'





  • View text, gazetteer and maps of early London from Volume III

    The Historic Towns Trust has made available the contents of Volume III of the series, available to download as PDFs. If you experience difficulties downloading the PDFs using Mozilla Firefox as your web browser, we suggest you try using Google Chrome. The atlas contains:

    • Contents and abbreviations
    • The text, in six chapters
    • The gazetteer, in three parts
    • Maps of the City of London from prehistoric times to c.1520

    An explanation of what a gazetteer is and how to use it can be found here.

    The scales of the maps as printed are as follows:

    • The Situation of London  Scale 1:250 000
    • The London Area in Pre-Roman Times  Scale 1:143 000
    • Roman London  Scale 1:5000
    • City of London c.1270  Scale 1:5000
    • City of London c.1520  (Maps 1 to 4)  Scale 1:2500
    • Wards c.1520  Scale 1:5000
    • Parishes c.1520  Scale 1:5000

    Note that these are the scales at which they were printed in the atlas (and hence compiled for reproduction at that scale), and will not be the scales if you print them out.  If you zoom into the PDF, you can't get out any more detail than was on the original maps!

    Map of London in 1520

    The maps of London as it appeared c.1520 (maps 1 to 4 in the atlas) have been digitised, georectified, extended in geographical scope to include parts of Southwark, and updated. They have been published as a Map of Tudor London.  The original maps will remain available free of charge on our web pages, but the new edition of the map has been substantially improved and revised to take into account the huge amount of archaeology and historical research that has taken place since the original map was published in 1989.

    Full details of the new Map of Tudor London 1520 (recommended retail price £9.99)  can be found here .

    The map also appears as part of the Layers of London on-line mapping project where it can be seen in context with other maps, both modern and historic.