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Fell, R.T., Early Maps of South-East Asia, Singapore, Oxford & NY,, Oxford University Press, 1991, ISBN 0-19-588972-X, 7¾ x 5¼ inches, xii, 122 pp., 21 uncolored + 13 colored illustrations, paper covered boards  (Oxford University Press, Unit 221, Ubi Avenue 4, Singapore 1440)

There is surprisingly little English-language literature on maps of Asia.  R.T. Fell, a "keen amateur collector," has set out to improve the situation with this small book aimed at the collector of maps of South-East Asia.  The first three chapters cover early exploration of the region, European map publishers of the time, and general observations on collecting maps.  The last chapter offers sound advice on caring for a collection.  The short bibliography is composed mainly of general map collecting books and histories of South-East Asia.

This information can readily be obtained elsewhere, and merely acts as wrapping for the meat of the book which is in the middle. There are eight chapters on mapping of different areas within South-East Asia, including discussion of individual maps. Historic events and their impact on maps are noted.  This central section is useful, and the book is recommended to collectors of maps of Asia.

Jon K. Rosenthal, 1993

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