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  • Place of origin:

    England (engraved)
    England (manufactured)

  • Date:

    ca. 1766 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Spilsbury, John, born 1739 - died 1769 (engraver)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Engraving mounted on thin mahogany, cut to shape.

  • Credit Line:

    Presented by Art Fund jointly to the V&A Museum of Childhood and the Historic Royal Palaces.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    On short term loan out for exhibition

This dissected map is one of two in Lady Charlotte Finch's puzzle cabinet created by engraver John Spilsbury. Spilsbury had established his own business selling maps after he finished his apprenticeship in 1760, but did not begin printing his own until 1766, when this puzzle dates from, and a sufficient market had built up for them. They were smaller and simpler than regular commercial maps, meaning they were cheaper to engrave, print and colour. They were intended for a juvenile audience and were purposefully designed for dissections such as these.

It was held in Lady Charlotte Finch's puzzle cabinet, in which she kept the dissected map puzzles she had commissioned for the children of George III, in her role as Royal Governess.

Physical description

Engraved map of Ireland ca. 1766, mounted on thin mahogany and cut to shape in 32 pieces.

Place of Origin

England (engraved)
England (manufactured)


ca. 1766 (made)


Spilsbury, John, born 1739 - died 1769 (engraver)

Materials and Techniques

Engraving mounted on thin mahogany, cut to shape.


height: 34 cm, width: 25 cm

Descriptive line

Dissection puzzle of Ireland, ca.1766, engraving mounted on mahogany, from Lady Charlotte Finch's puzzle cabinet.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Shefrin, Jill. Such Constant Affectionate Care: Lady Charlotte Finch - Royal Governess & the Children of George III . Los Angeles: The Cotsen Occasional Press, 2003


Paper; Ink; Mahogany


Mounting; Cutting; Engraving

Subjects depicted

Geography; Jigsaw puzzles


Children & Childhood; Games; Royalty

Production Type

Mass produced


Museum of Childhood

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