The map-plans in this collection of forty cities in Europe, Russia, the United States, and Asia were first published in the mid- nineteenth century by England's Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge. These maps were all commissioned and drawn within a period of thirteen years, presenting a unique opportunity to compare urban development among 40 cities in 19 countries at one moment in time. An exquisite feast for the eye, the hand-colored, hand-lettered steel engravings are artistic masterpieces in themselves, representative of an era of exceptional artisanal skill. They are reproduced here in fine detail in an oversized format. The Atlas of Rare City Maps includes both well-known European and American cities such as Amsterdam, London, Madrid, Moscow, New York, and Venice, as well as smaller cities like Calcutta, Edinburgh, Hamburg, Lisbon, Marseille, Parma, and Stockholm. An introductory essay by Melville C. Branch discusses the historical evolution of urban design, and provides a background on engraving techniques. Branch also evaluates each map-plan, remarking on the details of each engraving and the evolution of the forms of the cities, their histories, and demographic characteristics. This rare collection first appeared in its modern form twenty years ago in a limited edition (Arno Press); long out of print, this book has been much sought after by architects, urban planners, and map enthusiasts everywhere. Princeton Architectural Press is proud to make available once again this valuable resource.