Station Six: Library Treasures

David Loggan

Oxonia illustrata, sive omnium celeberrinnae istius universitatis collegiourm, aularum,
bibliothecae Bodleianae, scholarum publicarum, Theatri Sheldoniani, nec non urbis totius scenographia

(1675)


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 An Essay open at the title page

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The first exhibit is the bird's-eye view of Wadham College from the Oxonia Illustrata of 1675. This, the grandest of all Oxford illustrated books, was a series of forty highly accurate illustrations of Oxford institutions. The engraver, David Loggan, Danzig-born of Scottish family, worked for many years in Oxford on these illustrations, and was retained by the university in 1669 for the purpose at a salary of £1 as publicus academiæ sculptor. The bursarial accounts for Wadham show that the college, rather unusually, directly purchased Loggan's masterpiece in the year of its publication, for the large sum of £3 4s 6d. The engraved work was printed on a rolling press, and although the university owned suitable apparatus, Anthony Wood recorded that the book 'was not printed in the Theater, but in his [Loggan's] house in Holywell'. Loggan was subsequently lured to Cambridge for a parallel venture, the Cantabrigia Illustrata (1690).