Antiquarian maps, map collecting, map collectors, cartography, atlases, old and rare maps, antique charts, views, elevations, geographical prints, exploration, voyages of discovery, battle plans, wars, military history

The Prime Meridian

We buy and sell pre-20th century maps, atlases and related books,
and stock a wide general inventory.

Specific inquiries are welcome:


Member, International Map Collectors Society
Member, Washington Map Society
Founding Group and Founding Member, International Society for the History of the Map

Maps have many functions and many faces, and each of us sees them with different eyes...some will look for evidence of historical facts; others for the reflection of the mapmaker's knowledge, thought, and state of mind; others again for the formal qualities of design which distinguish the map as an artefact or a work of art.

from R. A. Skelton, chapter 1, page 3, in Maps: A Historical Survey of Their Study and Collecting, 1972.






Map collecting is a wonderful hobby, and can provide years of enjoyment on numerous levels. The Prime Meridian: Antique Maps & Books ® is here to help foster both the intellectual and collecting interests in these early cartographic documents. Map collecting does not have to be extremely expensive, although a collection focused on certain types of antique maps­, sometimes rare, ­from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries can be quite costly. A rare map may not have much commercial value, and a map may be valuable for reasons other than its monetary worth. Our purpose is not to recommend map collecting as an investment strategy for financial gain. Antique maps are more than simple illustrations intended to enhance the salability of a book: they are intellectual, historical documents in their own right. These antique maps, atlases, and other books with maps can be collected for many reasons: as diverse pieces of intellectual or printing history, as pieces of art for their aesthetic appeal, as visual and regional geographical documents, and much more. The Prime Meridian, our namesake, can be a historically interesting subject in reference to the production of these early maps. The focus of a map collection can be extremely diverse­--as diverse as the maps themselves--­and can lead to years of learning and discovery. The Prime Meridian: Antique Maps & Books ® is not only a dealer in these early maps and atlases, but also works diligently to provide extensive online information, accessible via the navigation bar on the left, intended to help map collectors and those interested in the history of cartography.

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