Keer's Hampshire 1605Notes by
Martin and Jean Norgate: 1999
This transcription is made from the back of the map
of Southampton ie Hampshire by Peter Keer, about 1605,
in its English translation edition about 1620. The map is in
the Map Collection of Hampshire CC Museums Service,
The descriptive text is incomplete, it was continued on other pages in its atlas.
HANT-SHIRE, lying upon the West of England, is borderered upon the North by Barkshire, upon the East with Surrey and Sussex, upon the South with the British Seas, and Ile of Wight, and upon the West with Dorset and Wilt-shire.
2 The length thereof from Blackwater in the North upon Surrey, unto Bascomb in the South upon the Sea, extended in a right line, is fiftie foure English miles: and the breadth drawne from Peters-field in the East, unto Tidworth in the West, and confines of Wilt-shire, is little lesse than thirtie miles, the whole Circumference about one hundred fiftie and five miles.
3 The Aire is temperate, though somewhat thick by reason of the Seas, and the many Rivers that through the Shire do fall, whose plentie of fish and fruitfull increase, doe manifoldly redeeme the harmes which they make.
4 The Soile is rich for Corne and Cattel, pleasant for pasturage, and plenteous for woods; in a word, in all commodities either for Sea or Land, blessed and happy.
5 Havens it hath, and those commodious both to let in, and to loose out Ships of great burden in trade of Merchandise, or any other imployments: whereof Portsmouth, Tichfield, Hamble, and South-hampton are the chiefe: besides many other creeks that open their bosomes into those Seas, and the Coast strengthened with many strong Castles, such as Hurst, calshot, South-hampton, S. Andrewes, Worth, Porchester, and South Castle, besides other Bulwarks, or Blockhouses that secure the Countrey: and further in the Land, as Malwood, Winchester, and Odiam, so strong, that in the time of King John, thirteene English-men onely defended the Fort for fifteene dayes against Lewis of France, that with a great Host assaulted it most hotly.
6 An-[ ]
[continued on further pages]
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