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Isle of Wight by John Rocque

Back to: Hampshire

18th century antique map of the Isle of Wight for sale

John Rocque (originally Jean; c. 1709–1762) was a surveyor and cartographer. Rocque was born no later than 1709, since that was the year he moved to England with his parents, who were French Huguenot émigrés. He became a godfather in 1728, which suggests he was at least twenty-one years old by that time. In addition to his work as surveyor and map maker, Rocque was an engraver and map-seller. He was also involved in some way in gardening as a young man, living with his brother Bartholomew, who was a landscape gardener, and producing plans for parterres, perhaps recording pre-existing designs, but few details of this work are known. Rocque produced engraved plans of the gardens at Wrest Park (1735), Claremont (1738), Charles Hamilton's naturalistic landscape garden at Painshill Park, Surrey (1744), Wanstead House (1745) and Wilton House (1746). Rocque is now mainly remembered for his map of London. He began work on this in 1737 and it was published in 24 printed sheets in 1747. It was by far the most detailed map of London published up to that time, and remains an important historical resource. The map of London and his other maps brought him an appointment as cartographer to the Prince of Wales in 1751. A fire in 1750 destroyed his premises and stock, but by 1753 he was employing ten draughtsmen, and The Small British Atlas: Being a New set of Maps of all the Counties of England and Wales appeared. There was a second edition in 1762.

Other maps by John Rocque

IOW 18th century map by John Rocque after Thomas Read