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Map of the 'Underditch Hundred' - 1662

This is a 1662 map of the Underditch Hundred (Hvnd) area of the Map Of Wilton or the County of Wilton by a Dutch cartographer Joan Blaue.

1662 Map of Wilton.jpg

The Dutch interest in maps of England wasn’t purely scientific, this was published between the end of the First Anglo Dutch War (1654) and the start of the Second (1665). Charles II was on the throne; his brother was later to lose the throne to the Dutch. Even in peace time the Dutch and English East India Companies were keen rivals and Blaue (pictured) was the Dutch Company’s official map maker.

Blalue official map maker.jpg

'A hundred' initially meant one hundred hides, each hide being an area that could support one peasant family. It became a subdivision below county level and continued in use till the 19th C. The Underditch or Wunderdiche is first mentioned in an 11th C grant of lands around Avon Farm.[1] It refers to a ditch possibly between Little Durnford and Stratford in or marking the boundary of the lands of a woman called Wonder (Wynder, Wundre). [2]

The map shows bridges across the Avon in Amesbury and Salisbury and none in between. Villages and shallow crossings grew side by side, hence Wils-, Dern-, Wood-, Stret-ford. The present house and bridge at Little Durnford are 18th C.

In the 16th C there was one Woodford, as in this map. By the end of the 17th C till the early 19th C there were two, Great and Little or Nether. Great became Upper, Little became Middle and Lower. [3]

Blaue shows Salesbvrye, the city we know today as Salisbury or New Sarum and just to its north, Old Salesbury. This is not Old Sarum but is indeed an Old Salisbury, veteres Sarisberias, that predates (Old) Sarum and its 13th C move of Cathedral and City from Old to New Sarum. [4]

Iford became Winterbourn(e) Ford and in time just Ford. Winterbourn(e) is a stream (bourne) that flows in winter but can run dry in the summer. Danteseye was a 13th C Lord of the manor. Stratford in the 16th to mid-17th C had been Stratford Dean and Common, one Stratford is shown here. Fisherton was Fisherton Anger, the site of a large gaol. Evilston was Foulstone or Fugglestone, originally Fugol's Farm, a parish that extended to Little Durnford and Avon Farm.

Charles I paid for repairs to the pale shown around Clarendon Park, this kept thousands of deer inside, deer from outside (“beyond the pale”) could leap in, those inside could not leap out. Charles II sold it in the 1660s. [5]

Kerry O’Connor

January 2022


Sources/ References/ Further Reading:

The map is from the Map Of Wilton or the County of Wilton By J Blaeu, 1662. Accessed from the National Library of Scotland Map Collection He had published an earlier one in 1645

Portrait of Joan Blaeu by J. van Rossum. 1663  Netherlands Institute for Art History. This was not the only Blaeu portrait by van Rossum

[1] The English Place-Name Society, University of Nottingham

[2] Most of the village for most of the post Domesday years has been in the Hundred of Underditch and spelling variations included Wonderdych.


[3] 'Woodford', in A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 6, ed. Elizabeth Crittall (London, 1962), pp. 221-227. British History Online

[accessed 2 January 2022].

[4] 'Old Salisbury: Before the Norman Conquest', in A History of the County of Wiltshire: Volume 6, ed. Elizabeth Crittall (London, 1962), pp. 51-53. British History Online [accessed 2 January 2022].

[5] James, T., Richardson, A., South., M. 2016  Clarendon Palace, Wiltshire: archaeology and history

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