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image SM Vol 48/20

Reference number

SM Vol 48/20


[101] Survey, Court of Exchequer, 10 April 1823


Exterior perspective of the Court of Exchequer range to New Palace Yard, from the north west looking south east


to a rough scale


View of the Court of Exchequer and Oliver's Coffee House

Signed and dated

  • 10/04/1823
    10th. April 1823.

Medium and dimensions

Pencil, coloured washes including vermilion, raw umber and Payne's grey, on wove paper bound in volume (211 x 272)


Probably Mee, Arthur Patrick (1802--1868), draughtsman
The Day Book entry for 10 April 1823 notes that Arthur Mee and David Mocatta were Making Sketches at / Westminster.
Possibly David Alfred Mocatta (1806 - 1882), draughtsman
The Day Book entry for 10 April 1823 notes that Arthur Mee and David Mocatta were Making Sketches at / Westminster.


The perspective shown in this drawing is a valuable record of the Exchequer range following the demolition of the Augmentations Office in 1793. Distinct from the Tudor building is the new western exterior wall. It appears to have been rendered, with the upper two storeys ornamented with a blind Venetian window. An off-axis doorway gave access to Oliver's Coffee House, located at ground floor level. Given the contrast in tints with the plinth, it appears that the Tudor parapet was also rendered (see SM 89/3/68).

There is a curatorial note attributing this drawing to George Bailey. This is highly unlikely given the drawing's consistency with the other washed perspectives in this volume, which are in Mee's hand. The association with Bailey could be based upon a misinterpretation of the Day Book entry for him on 10 April 1823 which notes that Bailey was <i>About plans of the New Courts / at Westminster</i>. Such phrasing clarifies that he was working on designs for the New Law Courts, and not surveys of the existing ones.



Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation. This catalogue of Soane’s designs for the New Law Courts was generously funded by The Worshipful Company of Mercers and The Pilgrim Trust.

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.

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