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David Russell

History, University of Leicester

Thesis title:

Stretching the Evidence: An examination of the English Landscape through a Geographical Information System (GIS), 1573-1700

My research combines maps with literary sources to reveal new insight into how the English landscape was perceived, portrayed and presented in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. I employ a Geographic Information System (GIS) to examine a range of cartographic evidence that depict three non-contiguous counties: Cornwall, Leicestershire and Norfolk. 

Drawing upon the works of the early modern English mapmakers; Christopher Saxton, John Speed, John Norden and Joel Gascoyne, in tandem with the literary works by William Camden, John Leyland, William Harrison and Michael Drayton. The conjoining of data gleaned from the analysis of maps and contemporary literature will reveal the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century landscape in a new light, aiding our understanding of the interaction between humans and their environment.

Research Area

  • History

Other Research Interests

  • Landscape
  • Cartography
  • Cartometry
  • Toponymy


  • Medieval Settlement Research Group