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Preliminary design and finished drawing for the ceiling and recess ceiling of the little drawing room, 1763 and 1765, Adam volume 11/100 executed with minor alterations (2)

Notes

The little drawing room is located on the south front of the south range at Audley End, adjacent to the great drawing room.

The colourful design shown in Adam volume 11/100 was executed with minor alterations and remains in situ, supported by the original Spalatro order columns, although the intercolumniation of these columns was altered at the request of Lady Griffin in order to accommodate her evening skirts. This space was intended for the use of ladies, while the men were in the great drawing room next door.

The interior is conspicuously Roman in style, and this ceiling was made in imitation of a ceiling in the Baths of Augustus, Rome. It was painted by Biagio Rebecca, and is comparable to the breakfast room at Mellerstain.

There is a drawing for the executed ceiling design at the house dated 1763. According to an account in the Essex Record Office Adam charged £15.15s for this drawing. There is also a drawing showing laid out wall elevations for the room at the house.

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

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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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