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Finished drawing and record drawing for a ceiling for the dining room, as executed, 5 November 1778 (2)


Though the house was demolished in 1950-51 we know that the executed ceiling followed these designs, with the exception of some alterations to the four plaques and cameos. The central painted blue and white oval followed the drawing exactly. The scene shows Bacchus rescuing Ariadne, the subject also used for the library ceiling at Newby Hall.

Stillman notes that the composition of this ceiling is a variant on a popular Adam scheme, and the delicacy and small-scale detailing is typical of Adam's work in the 1770s. It is distinguishable from similar ceilings as it has a central elliptical compartment which occupies the full length of the ceiling, whereas in the others, for example the dining room ceiling at Wormleybury, there are end panels flanking the central circle.



Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: drawings@soane.org.uk

Sir John Soane's collection includes some 30,000 architectural, design and topographical drawings which is a very important resource for scholars worldwide. His was the first architect’s collection to attempt to preserve the best in design for the architectural profession in the future, and it did so by assembling as exemplars surviving drawings by great Renaissance masters and by the leading architects in Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries and his near contemporaries such as Sir William Chambers, Robert Adam and George Dance the Younger. These drawings sit side by side with 9,000 drawings in Soane’s own hand or those of the pupils in his office, covering his early work as a student, his time in Italy and the drawings produced in the course of his architectural practice from 1780 until the 1830s.

Browse (via the vertical menu to the left) and search results for Drawings include a mixture of Concise catalogue records – drawn from an outline list of the collection – and fuller records where drawings have been catalogued in more detail (an ongoing process).