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1.2. Of the position, circuit, forme and quan|titie of the Ile of Britaine. Cap. 2.

Of the position, circuit, forme and quan|titie of the Ile of Britaine. Cap. 2.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 _BRitannia or Britain,How Bri|taine lieth from the maine. as we now terme it in our English toong, or Brutania as some pronounce it (by reason of the letter y in the first syllable of the word, as antiquitie did sometime deliuer it) is an Ile lieng in the Ocean sea, directlie ouer against that part of France which conteineth Picardie, Norman|die, and thereto the greatest part of little Britaine, which later region was called in time past Armorica , of the situation thereof vpon the sea coast, vntill such time as a companie of Britons (either led ouer by some of the Romane Emperours, or flieng thither from the tyrannie of such as oppressed them here in this Iland) did setle themselues there, and called it Britaine, after the name of their owne countrie, from whence they aduentured thither. It hath Ireland vpon the west side, on the north the maine sea, euen to Thule and the Hyperboreans; and on the east side also the Germane Ocean, by which we passe dailie through the trade of merchandize, not onlie into the low countries of Bel|gie, now miserablie afflicted betwéene the Spanish power and popish inquisition (as spice betwéene the morter and the pestell) but also into Germanie, Friezeland, Denmarke, and Norwaie, carrieng from hence thither, and bringing from thence hither, all such necessarie commodities as the seuerall countries doo yéeld: through which meanes, and besides common a|mitie conserued, traffike is mainteined, and the neces|sitie of each partie abundantlie reléeued.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 It conteineth in longitude taken by the middest of the region 19. degrees exactlie:The longi|tude and la|titude of this Ile. and in latitude 53. de|grées, and thirtie min. after the opinions of those that haue diligentlie obserued the same in our daies, and the faithfull report of such writers as haue left notice there|of vnto vs, in their learned treatises to be perpetuallie remembred. Howbeit, whereas some in setting downe of these two lines, haue séemed to varie about the pla|cing of the same, each of them diuerstie remembring the names of sundrie cities and townes, whereby they affirme them to haue their seuerall courses: for my part I haue thought good to procéed somewhat after another sort; that is, by diuiding the latest and best chards each way into two equall parts (so neere as I can possible bring the same to passe) wherby for the middle of lati|tude, I product Caerlile and Newcastell vpon Tine, (whose longest day consisteth of sixtéene houres, 48. mi|nuts) and for the longitude, Newberie,Longest day. Warwike, Shef|field, Skipton, &c: which dealing, in mine opinion, is most easie and indifferent, and likeliest meane to come by the certeine standing and situation of our Iland.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Touching the length and bredth of the same,The com|passe of Bri|taine. I find some variance amongst writers: for after some, there are from the Piere or point of Douer, vnto the farthest part of Cornewall westwards 320. miles: from thence againe to the point of Cathnesse by the Irish sea 800. Wherby Polydore and other doo gather, that the circuit of the whole Iland of Britaine is 1720. miles, which is full 280. lesse than Caesar dooth set downe, except there be some difference betwéene the Romane and British miles, as there is indéed; wherof hereafter I may make some farther conference.

Martianus writing of the bredth of Britaine, hath on|lie 300. miles, but Orosius hath 1200. in the whole com|passe. Ethicus also agreeing with Plinie , Martianus, and Solinus , hath 800. miles of length, but in the breadth he commeth short of their account by 120. miles. In like maner Dion in Seuero maketh the one of 891. miles: but the other; to wit, where it is broadest, of 289. and where it is narowest, of 37. Finally, Diodorus Siculus affirmeth the south coast to conteine 7000 furlongs, the second; to wit, à Carione ad Promontorium 15000. the third 20000. and the whole circuit to consist of 42000. But in our time we reckon the breadth from Douer to Cornewall, not to be aboue 300. miles, and the length from Douer to Cathnesse, no more than 500. which ne|uerthelesse must be measured by a right line, for other|wise I see not how the said diuision can hold.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 The forme and fashion of this Ile is thrée cornered,The [...] as some haue deuised, like vnto a triangle, bastard sword, wedge, or partesant, being broadest in the south EEBO page image 3 part, and gathering still narrower and narrower, till it come to the farthest point of Cathnesse northward, where it is narrowest of all, & there endeth in maner of a promontorie called Caledonium & Orchas in British Morwerydh, which is not aboue 30. miles ouer, as dai|lie experience by actuall trauell dooth confirme.

The old writers giue vnto the thrée principall cor|ners, crags,Promonto|ries of Bri|taine. points, and promontories of this Iland, thrée seuerall names. As vnto that of Kent, Cantium, that of Cornewall, Hellenes, and of Scotland, Caledo|nium, and Orchas; and these are called principall, in re|spect of the other, which are Taruisium, Nouantum, Epi|dium, Gangacum, Octapites, Herculeum, Antiueste|um, Ocrinum, Berubium, Taizalum, Acantium, &c : of which I thought good also to leaue this notice, to the end that such as shall come after, may thereby take oc|casion to seeke out their true places, wherof as yet I am in maner ignorant, I meane for the most part; bicause I haue no sound author that dooth leade mée to their knowledge.

Compare 1577 edition: 1 Furthermore,The distãce from the maine. the shortest and most vsuall cut that we haue out of our Iland to the maine, is from Douer (the farthest part of Kent eastward) vnto Calice a towne in Picardie 1300 miles from Rome, in old time called Petressa and Scalas , though some like better of black|nesse where the breadth of the sea is not aboue thir|tie miles. Which course, as it is now frequented and vsed for the most common and safe passage of such as come into our countrie out of France and diuers other realms, so it hath not beene vnknowne of old time vnto the Romans, who for the most part vsed these two hauens for their passage and repassage to and fro; al|though we finde, that now and then diuerse of them came also from Bullen, and landed at Sandwich, or some other places of the coast more toward the west, or betweene Hide and Lid; to wit, Romneie marsh, which in old time was called Romania or Romanorum insula) as to auoid the force of the wind & weather, that often molesteth seafaringmen in these narrowe seas, best liked them for their safegards. Betweene the part of Holland also, which lieth néere the mouth of the Rhene and this our Iland, are 900. furlongs, as Sosimus saith; and besides him, diuers other writers, which being con|uerted into English miles, doo yeeld 112. and foure od furlongs, whereby the iust distance of the neerest part of Britaine, from that part of the maine also dooth cer|teinlie appéere to be much lesse than the common maps of our countrie haue hitherto set downe.

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1.2. The deſcription of Britaine.¶Of the ſcituation and quantitie of the Iſle of Britayne. Cap. 1.

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The deſcription of Britaine.

¶Of the ſcituation and quantitie of the Iſle of Britayne. Cap. 1.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 How Bri|taine lyeth from the [...]ayne. _BRITANIA, or Britaine as we nowe terme it in our En|gliſhe tongue, is an Iſle lying in the Ocean ſea, directly a|gainſt that part of Fraunce, which conteyneth Picardie, Normandie, and therto the greateſt part of little Britaine, cal|led in time paſt Armorica of the ſcituation thereof vpon the ſea coaſt, and before ſuch time as a companie of Britons (eyther led o|uer by ſome of the Romayne Emperours, or flying thither from the tyrannie of ſuch as op|preſſed them here in this Iſlande) did ſettle themſelues there, & called it Britaine, after the name of their owne country, from whence they aduentured thither. It hath Irelande vp|on the Weſt ſide, on the North the mayne ſea, euen vnto Thule and the Hyperboreans, and on the Eaſt ſide alſo the Germaine Ocean, by which we paſſe daily thorowe by the trade of merchandiſe, not only into ye low countries of Belgie, but alſo into Germanie, Frizelande, Denmarke, and Norway, carying from hence thither, and bringing from thence hither, all ſuch neceſſarie commodities as the ſeuerall Countries doe yéelde: thorow which meanes, and beſides common amitie cõſerued, traffike is maintayned, and the neceſſitie of eche party abundantly relieued.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 The lon|gitude and latitude of this Iſle.It contayneth in longitude taken by the middeſt of the Region 19. degrées exactly: and in latitude 53. degrées, and 30. min. after the o|pinions of thoſe that haue diligently obſerued the ſame in our dayes, and the faithfull report of ſuch writers as haue left notice therof vnto vs, in their learned treatiſes to be perpetually remembred. Howbeit wheras ſome in ſetting downe of theſe two lines, haue ſéemed to vary about the placing of the ſame, eche of them di|uerſly remembring the names of ſundrie Ci|ties and townes, wheerby they affirme thẽ to haue their ſeueral courſes: for my part I haue thought good to procéede ſomewhat after ano|ther ſort, that is, by deuiding the lateſt and beſt Cardes eche way into two equall partes, (ſo neare as I can poſſibly bring the ſame to paſſe) whereby for the middle of latitude, I product Caerloil and Newcaſtell vpon Tyne (whoſe lõgeſt day conſiſteth of 16. houres,Longeſt day. 48. minuts) & for the longitude, Newbery, War|wicke, Sheffeld, Skiptõ, &c. which dealing in mine opinion, is moſt eaſie & indifferent, and lykelieſt meane to come by the certayne ſtan|ding and ſcituation of our Iſlande.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 Inlyke maner it hath in breadth from the Piere or poynt of Douer,The com|paſſe of Britaine. vnto the fartheſt part of Cornewall weſtwardes 320. myles: from thence agayne vnto the poynt of Cath|neſſe by the Iriſhe ſea, 800. Whereby Poli|dore and other doe gather that the circuite of the whole Iſlande of Britaine is 1720. myles, which is full 280. leſſe than Caeſar doth ſette downe, except there be ſome difference be|twéene the Romaine and Britiſhe myles, whereof heafter I maye make ſome farther conference.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 The forme and facion of this Iſle is lyke vnto a Triangle, Baſtarde ſworde, Wedge,The forme or Parteſant, being broadeſt in the South part, and gathering ſtill narrower and nar|rower, till it come to the fartheſt poynt of Cathneſſe Northwarde where it is narroweſt of all, and there endeth in maner of a Promon|torie, which is not aboue 30. myles ouer, as dayly experience doth confirme.

Compare 1587 edition: 1 The ſhorteſt & moſt vſuall [...]ut that we haue out of our Iſland to the maine,The di|ſtance frõ the mayne. is from Douer (the fartheſt part of Kent eaſtward) vnto Ca|lice in Picardie, where the breath of the ſea is not aboue 30. myles. Which courſe as it is now frequented and vſed for the moſt cõmon & ſafe paſſage of ſuch as come into our coũtrie out of Fraunce and diuers other Realmes, ſo it hath not bene vnknowne of olde time vnto the Romaynes, who for the moſt part vſed theſe two hauens for their paſſage and repaſ|ſage to and fro, although we finde that nowe and then, diuers of them came alſo from Bul|len and landed at Sandwiche, or ſome other places of the coaſt, as to anoyde the force of the wynde and weather, that often moleſted them in theſe narrowe ſeas, beſt liked for their ſafegardes. Betwéene the part of Hollande alſo, which lyeth nere the mouth of the Rhene, and this our Iſlande, are 900. furlonges, as Soſimus ſayeth, beſide diuers other writers,Lib. 4. which being conuerted into Engliſhe myles, doe yéelde one hundred and twelue, and foure odde furlongs, whereby the iuſt diſtaunce of Britayne from that part of the mayne alſo, doth certainly appeare to be much leſſe than the common Mappes of our Countrie haue hitherto ſet downe.