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Finished drawing for a sofa for the drawing room, 20 January 1773 (1)

Notes

This nine-and-a-half foot long sofa is thought to have been designed to stand beneath the mirror on the south wall of the drawing room. If it was executed it has not been traced. This design is in the Neo-Classical French taste. The use of straight sides was known in French sofas of this time, but was rare in England. A sofa of similar form appears in Adam's section of the drawing room in Northumberland House (c1773). The sea-horse medallion alludes to the Duke of Bolton's naval career.

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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.

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