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Alternative preliminary designs for the house, 1764, unexecuted (7)


Adam volumes 54/7/91, 54/7/124, 54/1/64 verso, 54/7/99, 54/7/120 and 54/7/125 are new attributions, and have been included here on account of their shape, scale, and arrangement. Particularly notable are the five-bay fronts the dimensions of 55 by 127 feet, as well as the diagonally slanting east boundary on Brick Lane, and the central location of a new half-turn stiarcase illuminated by a window onto the interior court. It had previously been held that Adam volume 7/144 was the only surviving graphic evidence of Adam's proposed architectural alterations to Coventry House.

It is possible that Adam volume 54/7/91 is for the ground storey, unlike the other six drawings. This is suggested by what appears to be a central external door giving access to a hall beyond which is screened by columns, and to the rear left-hand corner of the principal block there is a butler's pantry which would certainly not have appeared on the first storey piano nobile level of the house. That Adam made no alterations to the ground storey of Coventry House makes this drawing a surprising survivial.

Adam charged £26.5s. to examine the house in October 1764, in anticipation of his alterations. These plans suggest that structural alterations were intended, although none were executed. It is recorded in Adam's bills to Lord Coventry that he made presentation drawings for these proposed alterations, including estimates of cost. Adam charged £10.10s. for these drawings, but they do not survive.



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Contents of Alternative preliminary designs for the house, 1764, unexecuted (7)