Antique map of Monmouthshire Wales. Original outline hand-colouring from Samuel Lewis’s Topographical Dictionary of England, published 1835. Samuel Lewis (c.1782 – 1865) was the editor and publisher of topographical dictionaries and maps of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The aim of the texts was to give in ‘a condensed form’, a faithful and impartial description of each place. The firm of Samuel Lewis and Co. was based in London. Samuel Lewis the elder died in 1865. His son of the same name predeceased him in 1862. This work contains every fact of importance tending to illustrate the local history of England. Arranged alphabetically by place (village, parish, town, etc.), it provides a faithful description of all English localities as they existed at the time of first publication (1831), showing exactly where a particular civil parish was located in relation to the nearest town or towns, the barony, county, and province in which it was situated, its principal landowners, the diocese in which it was situated, and—of novel importance—the Roman Catholic district in which the parish was located and the names of corresponding Catholic parishes. There were six subsequent editions, the last of which (1848-9) was in four volumes and an atlas.
Monmouthshire (Welsh: Sir Fynwy) is a county in south east Wales. The name derives from the historic county of Monmouthshire of which it covers the eastern 60%. The largest town is Abergavenny. Other towns and large villages are Caldicot, Chepstow, Monmouth, Magor and Usk.